Unemployment in the eurozone was unchanged in November at 9.8 percent of the workforce.
Eurostat, the European Union’s statistics agency, said the number of people out of work in the 19 countries of the eurozone fell by 15,000 to a total of 15.9 million.
Italy’s figures were the most disappointing with a 57,000 increase in the period just before a referendum on constitutional reform, taking it to a 17-month high of 11.9 percent from October’s 11.8 percent.
The region’s largest economy, Germany. had the lowest unemployment rate – 4.1 percent.
In France, the rate fell from 9.7 percent in October to 9.5 percent in November.
Spain was at 19.2 percent in November and Greece recorded 23.1 percent of its working population without jobs in September, the latest month for which data was available.
Youth unemployment trended up, rising to 21.2 percent in November, from October’s 20.9 percent.
France and Italy in particular saw a strong increase in youth unemployment. In France it was 25.9 percent in November, compared with 25.7 percent in October. Italy’s total was 39.4 percent in November, compared with 37.6 percent in October.
European Commission spokesman Christian Wigand said the high level of joblessness among young people was “a matter of concern and a high priority” for the European Union executive, adding that “further efforts were needed”.
For all the 28 EU countries, the jobless rate declined slightly, to 8.3 percent, compared to 8.4 percent in October.