Euro zone seasonally-adjusted unemployment was 11.3 per cent in July 2012, stable compared with June, EU statistics office Eurostat said on August 31 2012. It was 10.1 per cent in July 2011.
The EU27 unemployment rate was 10.4 per cent in July 2012, also stable compared with June. It was 9.6 per cent in July 2011.
At 12.4 per cent, unemployment in Bulgaria in July 2012 was higher than both the averages for the EU and for the 17-member euro zone.
Eurostat estimates that 25.254 million men and women in the EU27, of whom 18.002 million were in the euro area, were unemployed in July 2012. Compared with June 2012, the number of unemployed increased by 43 000 in the EU27 and by 88 000 in the euro area. Compared with July 2011, unemployment rose by 2.104 million in the EU27 and by 2.051 million in theeuro area.
Among EU member states, the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in Austria (4.5 per cent), the Netherlands (5.3 per cent), Germany and Luxembourg (both 5.5 per cent), and the highest in Spain (25.1 per cent) and Greece (23.1 per cent in May 2012).
Compared with a year ago, the unemployment rate fell in 10 EU countries, increased in 16 and remained stable in Slovenia. The largest falls were observed in Estonia (13.2 per cent to 10.1 per cent between the second quarters of 2011 and 2012), Lithuania (15.2 per cent to 13.0 per cent) and Latvia (17.0 per cent to 15.9 per cent between the second quarters of 2011 and 2012). The highest increases were registered in Greece (16.8 per cent to 23.1 per cent between May 2011 and May 2012), Spain (21.7 per cent to 25.1 per cent) and Cyprus (7.7 per cent to 10.9 per cent).
Between July 2011 and July 2012, unemployment among men increased from 9.8 per cent to 11.3 per cent in the euro area and from 9.5 per cent to 10.5 per cent in the EU27. Unemployment among women rose from 10.4 per cent to 11.4 per cent in the euro area and from 9.8 per cent to 10.4 per cent in the EU27.
In July 2012, 5.468 million young persons (under 25) were unemployed in the EU27, of whom 3.388 million were in the euro area. Compared with July 2011, youth unemployment rose by 182 000 in the EU27 and by 204 000 in the euro area. In July 2012, the youth unemployment rate was 22.5 per cent in the EU27 and 22.6 per cent in the euro area. In July 2011, it was 21.3 per cent and 20.7 per cent respectively. In July 2012 the lowest rates were observed in Germany (8.0 per cent), Austria (8.9 per cent) and the Netherlands (9.2 per cent), and the highest in Greece (53.8 per cent in May 2012) and Spain (52.9 per cent).
(Photo: Sergio Roberto Bichara/sxc.hu)