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Eurozone Jobless Rate Lowest Since 2009


Eurozone unemployment rate declined to the lowest since 2009 as robust activity created more jobs in the 19-nation currency bloc.

The jobless rate dropped to 8.7 percent in November, in line with economists' expectations, from 8.8 percent in October, figures from Eurostat showed Tuesday. This was the lowest since January 2009.

The number of unemployed decreased by 107,000 from the previous month to 14.26 million in November. From November 2016, people out of work decreased by 1.56 million.

The unemployment rate among youth aged below 25 dropped to 18.2 percent in November from 18.4 percent in October.

Jessica Hinds at Capital Economics expects Eurozone labor market recovery to continue. The unemployment rate is set to fall further in 2018, putting some upward pressure on wage growth, the economist noted.

Hinds also said that the European Central Bank is set to tread very cautiously in normalizing its policy stance over the next year or so, stressing that interest rate rises remain a long way off even as it winds down its monthly asset purchases. The first rate rise is expected in September 2019.

In the EU28, the unemployment rate fell slightly to 7.3 percent from 7.4 percent a month ago. This was the lowest rate registered in the EU28 since October 2008.

Among member countries, the lowest rates in November were seen in the Czech Republic, Malta and Germany. The highest was seen in Greece, at 20.5 percent in September.

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