Euro Area Unemployment Rate Stable at 9.8%

The euro area (EA16) seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 9.8% in October 2009, the same as in September. It was 7.9% in October 2008.

The EU27 unemployment rate was 9.3% in October 2009, compared with 9.2% in September. It was 7.3% in October 2008.

Eurostat estimates that 22.510 million men and women in the EU27, of whom 15.567 million were in the euro area, were unemployed in October 2009. Compared with September, the number of persons unemployed increased by 258 000 in the EU27 and by 134000 in the euro area. Compared with October 2008, unemployment went up by 5.002 million in the EU27 and by 3.149 million in the euro area.

Among the Member States, the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in the Netherlands (3.7%) and Austria (4.7%), and the highest rates in Latvia (20.9%) and Spain (19.3%).

Compared with a year ago, all Member States recorded an increase in their unemployment rate. The smallest increases were observed in Germany (7.1% to 7.5%), Austria (4.0% to 4.7%) and Romania (5.7% to 6.4% between the second quarters of 2008 and 2009). The highest increases were registered in Latvia (9.1% to 20.9%) and Lithuania (4.8% to 13.8% between the second quarters of 2008 and 2009).

In October 2009, the youth unemployment rate (under-25s) was 20.6% in the euro area and 20.7% in the EU27. In October 2008 it was 16.2% in both zones. The lowest rate was observed in the Netherlands (7.2%), and the highest rates in Spain (42.9%) and Latvia (33.6% in the third quarter of 2009)., Eurostat
12/1/2009 10:50:54 AM