The number of people out of work in France shot up again in January, coming closer to the all time high.
The total of jobseekers in mainland France jumped by 1.4 percent to 3.17 million.
Half of that rise was due to a change in the way of collating the figures in January, but it is a return to the rapid pace of increase seen over 19 straight months up until last December when the rise was less.
The numbers put more pressure on Socialist President Francois Hollande who has made tackling joblessness his top priority.
After already backtracking in recent days on his growth and deficit targets for 2013, Hollande admitted at the weekend that weak growth would make his unemployment target more difficult to reach.
Analysts predict the unemployment rate, already above 10 percent, will keep rising until the start of next year.
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