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The OECD area employment rate was 65.0% in the second quarter of the year, up + 0.1% from the previous quarter and up +0.2% than one year ago, the latest quarterly employment report shows.
But employment levels differed strongly across OECD countries in the quarter. In Europe, the employment rate continued to fall by -0.2% to 63.8%, while this was stable in the US at 67.0%.
Across Europe, employment in the three months to June plummeted sharply in Greece, down -4.7% to 51.4%. This was followed by Spain where employment decreased -2.7% to 55.6%, and Portugal where the number of people with jobs dropped by -2.4% to 62.3%.
On the other hand, employment increased “significantly” in Estonia by +2.8% to 67.3%, and by +1.7% to 65.9% in Luxembourg. Hungary also saw an improvement with employment increasing by +1.4% to 57.1%.
There are now also more older workers with jobs since the recession began with employment in this age group reaching 55.4%, up +1.3% since the onset of the crisis. But youth employment has continued to deteriorate to 39.3% in the second quarter of 2012, down -3.5% since 2008.