Euro area unemployment at 8.5% EU28 at 7.1%

May 2, 2018

For the month of March 2018 the euro area unemployment rate remained stable at 8.5% when compared to February 2018, according to the latest report published by Eurostat. However, year over year, unemployment rate fell 0.9%  from 9.4% recorded in March 2017. Unemployment is at its lowest in the euro area since December 2008.

The unemployment rate movements for EU28 mirrored that of the euro area, albeit at a lower percentage. For the month of March 2018, unemployment for EU28 stood at 7.1% similar to the previous month. However, on an annual basis unemployment fell from 7.9% recorded in March 2017. Currently, unemployment for EU28 marks the lowest it has ever being since September 2008.

As reported by Eurostat, “17.481 million men and women in the EU28, of whom 13.824 million in the euro area, were unemployed in March 2018. Compared with February 2018, the number of persons unemployed decreased by 94 000 in the EU28 and by 83 000 in the euro area. Compared with March 2017, unemployment fell by 1.930 million in the EU28 and by 1.414 million in the euro area.”

Member States

Among the Member States, the lowest unemployment rates in March 2018 were recorded in the Czech Republic(2.2%), Malta (3.3%) and Germany (3.4%). The highest unemployment rates were observed in Greece (20.6% in January 2018) and Spain (16.1%).Compared with a year ago, the unemployment rate fell in all Member States except Lithuania where it remained stable and Estonia where it increased (from 5.3% to 6.5% between February 2017 and February 2018). The largest decreases were registered in Cyprus (from 12.3% to 9.1%), Greece (from 23.2% to 20.6% between January 2017 and January 2018), Croatia (from 11.8% to 9.4%) and Portugal (from 9.7% to 7.4%).

Youth unemployment

Unemployment among youth has reduced year over year for both EU28 and the euro area. In March 2018, the youth unemployment rate was 15.6% in the EU28 and 17.3% in the euro area, compared with 17.3% and 19.4% respectively in March 2017. In March 2018, the lowest rates were observed in Germany (6.1%), the Czech Republic (6.8%) and the Netherlands (7.0%), while the highest were recorded in Greece (42.3% in January 2018), Spain (35.0%) and Italy (31.7%). Youth is defined as persons under the age of 25.



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