French Q2 Jobless Rate Lowest in Over 5 Years


The unemployment rate in France dropped slightly to 9.5 percent in the second quarter of 2017 from 9.6 percent in the previous period. It was the lowest jobless rate since the first quarter of 2012. Meanwhile, the employment rate increased by 0.5 percentage points to 65.3 percent, its highest level since 1980, and the activity rate rose by 0.5 percentage points to 72 percent, its highest level since 1975.

The average ILO unemployment rate in metropolitan France and the overseas departments (excluding Mayotte) fell to 9.5 percent from 9.6 percent in the previous period. In metropolitan France only, the unemployment rate declined to 9.2 percent in the three months to June from 9.3 percent in the previous period, as the number of unemployed dropped by 20,000 to 2.7 million. The unemployment decreased among persons aged 25 to 49 and those aged 50 and over, whereas it increased for youths. Among unemployed, 1.2 million were seeking a job for at least one year. The long-term unemployment rate edged down to 4 percent from 4.1 percent in Q1. 

In the first quarter, the employment rate of the population aged 15-64 years increased by 0.5 percentage points from the previous period to 65.3 percent in the second quarter, its highest level since 1980. It rose across all age groups, but more particularly among persons aged 50 to 64. Over a year, the employment rate increased by 0.7 percentage points.

About 6.1 percent of the employed persons were underemployed, meaning that they had a part-time job but wished to work more.

The activity rate of people aged 15-64 rose by 0.5 percentage points to 72 percent, its highest level since 1975. Over a year, it increased by 0.4 percentage points. Among inactive people, 1.5 million persons wished to work without being considered as unemployed according to the ILO definition: they made up the halo of unemployment. Their number decreased by 22,000 compared to Q1 2017 and was almost steady over a year.

Insee l Rida Husna | rida@tradingeconomics.com
8/17/2017 7:25:23 AM