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Video: Euro unemployment hits new high

11-01-2012 13:56 BJT

Eurozone unemployment has hit a record 11-point-6 percent, raising fears of a continuing economic slowdown. As Jack Barton reports, the new data is prompting some analysts to speculate that the region may have already slipped into another recession.

In yet another grim economic development for the Eurozone unemployment has now hit a record high of 11.6 percent. Eighteen and-a-half million people were out of work across the Euro area in September, a gain of 146,000 on the previous month. Spain, which is still suffering the fallout of a burst property sector bubble, had the highest rate at 25.8 percent.

Ilaria Maselli, economist of Center for European Policy Studies, said, "The problem in Spain is that there are so many construction workers who are currently unemployed that even if there was growth in the next quarter it would be difficult to re-employ them in aother sector. Therefore in the case of Spain it is likely that unemployment will remain high for a while."

And Greece was not far behind with a jobless rate that is also now above 25 percent. Youth unemployment is more than 50 percent in Greece and Spain, both of which are at the epicenter of Europe’s three-year old debt crisis, but other countries like Portugal, Italy and Cyprus are also struggling to curb high and rising unemployment.

Fabian Zuleeg, chief economist of European Policy Center, said, "Very clearly these economies are in deep trouble, they have a growth problem, they had a growth problem when the crisis hit, and now we have on top of the general growth problems we have the programs, the austerity programs, the reform programs and these are also hitting the economy, so they mean lower growth and lower growth means more unemployment."

Unemployment remained relatively low in countries like Germany and Austria, but some core member states like France, with a rate of almost 11 percent, are also clearly suffering.

The latest unemployment figures have heightened expectations that when the initial third quarter economic data is released in the middle of next month, it will clearly show that the Eurozone as a whole has slipped into recession.

Editor:James |Source: CCTV.com

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