Unemployment on the rise in Europe
on 31/10/2013 10:56:23
Data from Eurostat show the jobless rate in the single currency economic bloc is 12.2%, up from 11.6% in the same month last year.
The number of unemployed rose by 60,000 to 19.45 million, while the jobless rate for those aged under 25 edged up to 24.1% from 24% in August.
Analysts had widely expected the eurozone unemployment rate to remain static in September, so the new figures show Europe's recovery is still too tepid.
"The latest figures put a dent in hopes that the labour market may have reached a turning point," said analyst Ben May of Capital Economic.
The unemployment rate for the wider 28-nation European Union, in turn, remained unchanged on the month at 11%, according to Eurostat.
Youth unemployment rates are lowest in Germany and Austria, with 7.7% and 8.7%, and highest in Europe's southern economies, which have been hit hard by the debt crisis and government austerity measures. They were around 57% in Greece and 56% in Spain.
The overall unemployment rate showed similar disparities. Germany and Austria had low rates of 5%. By contrast, joblessness was 26.6% in Spain. In Greece, where the latest figures available were for July - it stood at 27.6%.
Ireland had the seventh-highest rate, at 13.6%.
The eurozone's economy grew by 0.3% in the second quarter compared with the previous three-month period, bringing it out of a recession that saw six straight quarterly declines. But the recovery is expected to be slow.
The European Central Bank's benchmark interest rate stands at a record-low 0.5% and appears likely to stay flat amid a slow recovery and an inflation rate well below its targeted ceiling of 2%, analysts say.
The eurozone's annual inflation rate dropped to 0.7% in October from 1.1% a month earlier, Eurostat said.