The eurozone unemployment rate has hit a record high at 11.8% in November 2012 with 18.8 million people out of jobs according to Eurostat and youth unemployment at a new high of 24.4%.
The eurozone unemployment rate rose to 11.8% in November 2012 - the highest rate on record according to official figures out today.
"Today's unemployment data rather takes the shine off recent claims that the eurozone crisis is over. The immediate threat to the single currency has receded, but politicians and policymakers still face an ailing economy. Initiatives such as a banking union or the ECB's bond-buying programme may hold the eurozone together, but they don't deliver the hope of immediate growth."
Once again the highest rate was seen in Spain at 26.6% followed by Greece at 26% (recorded for September 2012). According to Eurostat, the unemployment rate increased in 18 of the EU member states, fell in seven and remained stable in both Denmark and Hungary.
Unemployment rates vary slightly between the EA 17 (European nations adopting the EURO as their currency) and the EU 27 or European Union.
The latest figures from Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, also show the EU27 unemployment rate stood at 10.7% in November, stable compared with the previous month.
Eurostat figures also show youth unemployment and the latest figures suggest the situation has got worse. The youth unemployment rate for November 2012 was 23.7% in the EU, up from 22.2% in November 2011.
The eurozone recorded a youth unemployment rate of 24.4%, up from 24.2% the previous month. Greece and Spain reported the highest rates at 57.6% (September 2012) and 56.5% respectively.
Germany, Austria and the Netherlands had the lowest youth unemployment rates at 8.1%, 9% and 9.7% respectively.
The latest release shows that 26.06m people in the whole European Union were unemployed in November 2012 - an increase of 154,000 people on the previous month. Compared with November 2011, unemployment has risen by 2.012m.
Despite the latest release displaying the November 2012 seasonally adjusted rates for most EU countries, there are still some gaps. The latest recorded figures for Greece are from September 2012.
Austria and Luxembourg had the lowest unemployment rates at 4.5% and 5.1% respectively. Germany (5.4%) and the Netherlands (5.6%) also recorded low rates of unemployment.
The table below shows the seasonally adjusted unemployment rates by country and month. There is also a table showing youth unemployment by country. Breakdowns by gender can be found in our downloadable spreadsheet. What can you do with this data?
Eurozone Unemployment Rate Hits Record High in February 2013
Unemployment rose to a record high of 12 percent in February 2013 in the Eurozone, according to the latest data released by the EU's official statistics agency.
The Belgium-based Eurostat said on Tuesday that some 19.07 million people in the 17-member currency bloc are looking for jobs, up by 1.01 percent from the same month last year.
Laszlo Andor, a spokeswoman for EU Employment Commissioner, said.
"Such unacceptably high levels of unemployment are a tragedy for Europe. The EU has to mobilise all available resources to create jobs...young people in particular need help."
The figures and a weak manufacturing sector report added to the gloom after data earlier this year had encouraged some hope the European economy might finally have touched bottom.
Analysts suggested Tuesday's reports pointed instead to worse to come, with the jobless queues likely to grow as the debt crisis continues to sap the economy.
The highest unemployment rates in February 2013 were found in Spain with 26.3 percent and neighbour Portugal, on 17.5 percent.
Greece was put at it 26.4 percent but this figure is for December, the latest available.
The lowest rates were 4.8 percent in Austria and 5.4 percent in Germany, Europe's biggest economy.
With youth unemployment a huge cause of concern, Eurostat said that the jobless rate for under-25s ran at 23.9 percent in the Eurozone and 23.5 percent in the EU.
Among the countries with the highest youth jobless levels, Spain was on 55.7 percent, followed by Portugal on 38.2 percent and Italy with 37.8 percent.
Greece was the highest with 58.4 percent but this was also for December.
In the United States, the youth unemployment rates for teens (16-19 yrs) and young adults (20-24 yrs) are at historical highs, peaking at 26.75% for teens and 17.5% for young adults in early 2009 as a result of the Great Recession.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistis, the youth (ages 16-24 yrs) unemployment rate stood at 16.2% at the end of March 2013. This is more than double the U.S. unemployment rate. By contrast, the Eurozone youth unemployment rate was 23.9% -- +47.5% higher than the U.S.
When you breakdown the U.S. unemployment rate by age and race, it is obvious that Hispanic and Black youth are having a difficult time finding employment.
Howard Archer of IHS Global Insight said the figures marked a "dismal landmark" at 12 percent -- already very close to the official EU 2013 forecast of 12.2 percent.
COMMENTARY: As you can readily see, although the U.S. unemployment rate as of March 2013 was 7.6%. At the height of the Great Recession, the official U.S. unemployment rate exceeded 10%. If you factor in individuals who gave up looking for work and under-employed individuals (part-time workers and temps) the U.S. unemployment rate was 22%.
Three Measurements of U.S. Unemployment Rates - Official, Official+Workers No Looking For Work, and Official+Workers Not Looking For Work+Underemployed Workers - 1994 through April 2009 - BLS (Click Image To Enlarge)
In a blog post dated November 6, 2011, I prepared a detailed analysis of the U.S. unemployment rate, and I explained the three key factors as to why the unemployment rate will continue to remain high, and why no President, not even Barack Obama, is likely to do much about it. I believe that the Eurozone is in a similar fix.
To put things into perspective, the present Eurozone unemployment rate of 12% is probably closer to 25% when you factor in individuals who gave up looking for work and under-employed individuals (part-time workers and temps). As a resu;t of these horrific unemployment statistics, the Eurozone is suffering through a recession similar to what the U.S. experienced just recently.
Courtesy of an article dated October 31, 2012 appearing in The Guardian and an article dated April 2, 2013 appearing in Aljezeera and an article dated April 5, 2013 appearing in Center For Amerian Progress