The latest figures from Eurostat, the EU’s statistical number-crunchers, indicate unemployment is at its lowest-ever level in the Eurozone’s 13 countries.
For the EU’s 27 members the rate is even lower and continues to fall, but there are fears the record low level in the Eurozone may be bottoming out, and that a rise could be on the way.
There are winners and losers, however. The Dutch are virtually all hard at it, with only three point three percent unemployment, whereas the French are lagging behind with a stubbornly high rate, at eight point six percent.
The figures have to be taken with at least a pinch of salt, as Italian and Greek unemployment data are unavailable. Eurostat figures are also disputed by some members, notably the French, who are changing their methods of calculation and moving to quarterly instead of monthly publication of the results.
One group missing out appears to be the young. Just under 15 percent of the under 25’s are jobless in the Eurozone, and just over 15 percent throughout the EU. Again young French workers miss out bigtime; over 21 percent of them are on the dole.
However by international standards European unemployment remains high; the USA is at four point six percent, while Japan is at three point eight.