Employment: In Europe, the unemployment rate remains at a historically low level
INFOGRAPHICS. Despite rampant inflation and war on its continent, the European economy is still showing signs of resistance. Following Friday’s release of positive Eurozone growth figures (0.7% in the second half of the year) the Eurostat institute published on Monday the unemployment rate in the zone for June. For the second month in a row, it remains at a historically low level: 6.6% for the 19 countries that share the euro and 6% for the entire European Union, the Institute announces.
On an annual basis, the unemployment rate fell by 1.3 points in the euro zone and by 1.2 in the European Union in June. In absolute terms, around 12.93 million men and women remained unemployed in the 27 EU countries, including 10.92 million in the 19 countries sharing the single currency (and 12.882 million a year earlier).
Some nuances, however: Among young people (under 25), in June compared to May, the unemployment rate rose by 0.4 points in the euro area and by 0.3 points in the European Union to 13.6% in the EU and the euro area.
For women, the unemployment rate was 6.4% in the EU and 7% in the euro area, unchanged from the rates recorded in May 2022. For men in June it was 5.7% in the EU and 6.2% in the euro zone. Prices again identical to those of the previous month.
France above the European average
Behind these averages, not all countries are in the same boat. The lowest unemployment rates were recorded in the Czech Republic (2.4%), Poland (2.7%) and Germany (2.8%). despite an economy that slowed down sharply in the second quarter. Conversely, Spain recorded the highest rate at 12.6% in June, together with Greece (12.3%). Then follow Italy (8.1%) and Sweden (7.6%). According to Eurostat data, France is just below but above the European average with 7.2% of the unemployed population.
As a reminder, the unemployment rate is the number of unemployed as a percentage of the labor force. Eurostat figures are based on the International Labor Office (ILO) definition of unemployment. Unemployed persons are those who have actively looked for work in the previous four weeks and are available to start work within the next two weeks.
In addition to the consequences of this historically low rate, countries are facing recruitment pressures. In fact, many sectors have difficulties finding workers, for example in the hotel and catering industry or in transport. The situation is similarin the United States where the rate of unemploymentis very close to pre-pandemic levels at 3.6%, its lowest in 50 years, and employers are still struggling to hire new workers.