Unemployment in Bulgaria in December 2019 was 3.7 per cent, down from 4.7 per cent in December 2018, European Union statistics agency Eurostat said on January 30, citing seasonally-adjusted figures.
This was the second-largest decrease in unemployment in an EU country during that time.
The December 2018 figure represented an estimated 157 000 people in Bulgaria, which a year later had decreased to 126 000, according to Eurostat.
Youth unemployment in Bulgaria in December 2019 was seven per cent, down from 10.3 per cent in December 2018.
Eurostat estimated that in December 2018, 15 000 under-25s were unemployed in Bulgaria. A year later, the figure was 10 000.
The seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate in the euro zone was 7.4 per cent in December 2019, down from 7.5 per cent in November 2019 and from 7.8 per cent in December 2018. This is the lowest rate recorded in the euro zone since May 2008.
The EU28 unemployment rate was 6.2 per cent in December 2019, down from 6.3 per cent in November 2019 and from 6.6 per cent in December 2018. This is the lowest rate recorded in the EU28 since the start of the EU monthly unemployment series in January 2000.
Among EU countries, in December 2019 unemployment was lowest in the Czech Republic (two per cent) as well as in Germany and the Netherlands (both 3.2 per cent).
Unemployment was highest in Greece (16.6 per cent in October 2019) and Spain(13.7 per cent).
Compared with a year ago, unemployment fell in 21 EU countries, remained stable in Denmark, while it increased in Cyprus (from 7.4 per cent to 7.6 per cent), Slovenia (from 4.4 per cent to 4.6 per cent), Lithuania (from 5.8 per cent to 6.1 per cent), Portugal (from 6.6 per cent to 6.9 per cent), Luxembourg (from 5.2 per cent to 5.6 per cent) and Sweden (from 6.5 per cent to 6.9 per cent).
The largest decreases were registered in Greece (from 18.5 per cent to 16.6 per cent between October 2018 and October 2019), Bulgaria (from 4.7 per cent to 3.7 per cent) and Croatia (from 7.3 per cent to 6.4 per cent).
In December 2019, 3.155 million young people (under 25) were unemployed in the EU28, of whom 2.213 million were in the euro zone.
Compared with December 2018, youth unemployment decreased by 143 000 in the EU28 and by 129 000 in the euro zone.
In December 2019, youth unemployment was 14.1 per cent in the EU28 and 15.3 per cent in the euro zone, compared with 14.6 per cent and 16.2 per cent, respectively, in December 2018.
In December 2019, the lowest rates of youth unemployment were in the Czech Republic (4.3 per cent), Germany (5.8 per cent) and the Netherlands (6.7 per cent), while the highest were recorded in Greece (35.6 per cent in October 2019), Spain (30 per cent)and Italy (28.9 per cent), Eurostat said.
(Photo: Odan Jaeger)