Eurozone morale improves, still record unemployment

Eurozone morale improves, still record unemployment
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Economic confidence in the eurozone improved sharply in August, up for the fourth straight month.

As the region came out of recession, business managers surveyed by the European Commission said they were more optimistic than they have been in the last two years.

The upbeat outlook was based on business orders, industrial confidence and other factors such as companies’ hiring plans.

At the same time it was announced annual consumer price inflation in August for the eurozone was 1.3 percent up on the same month last year. In July it had been 1.6 percent.

Low inflation is a further potential boon to the economy, giving households a little more spending power, and allowing the European Central Bank to interest rates low to try to help the economy.

Morale may be improving, but the latest tally showed unemployment in the eurozone in July remained at a record high of 12.1 percent.

There is a huge variation in jobless rates between countries.

They range from just over five percent of the workforce in Germany to almost 28 percent in Greece and more than 26 percent in Spain.

Throughout the region 3.5 million people under the age of 25 remain unemployed.

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