Eurozone unemployment hits record 12% in February with 19 million ‘on the dole’
Eurozone unemployment ran at a record 12 percent in February, with more than 19 million people on the dole as the debt crisis continued to sap the economy, official data showed Tuesday.
The Eurostat data agency said unemployment in the 17-nation eurozone at 12 percent was unchanged from January when the figure was initially given as 11.9 percent.
In the full 27-member EU, unemployment in February rose to 10.9 percent from 10.8 percent, with 26.34 million out of work, it said.
Some 33,000 joined the jobless queues in the eurozone and 76,000 in the EU over the month of February, Eurostat said.
Compared with a year earlier, the increase in registered unemployment was 1.78 million in the eurozone and 1.81 million in the EU.
The highest unemployment rates in February were found in Spain with 26.3 percent and neighbour Portugal, on 17.5 percent. Greece was put at it 26.4 percent but this figure is for December, the latest available.
The lowest rates were 4.8 percent in Austria and 5.4 percent in Germany, Europe’s biggest economy.
With youth unemployment a huge cause of concern, Eurostat said that the jobless rate for under-25s ran at 23.9 percent in the eurozone and 23.5 percent in the EU.
Among the countries with the highest youth jobless levels, Spain was on 55.7 percent, followed by Portugal on 38.2 percent and Italy with 37.8 percent.
Greece was the highest with 58.4 percent but this figure was for December, the last available.