Spain sees record fall in unemployment

Jobless rate drops below 20 percent for first time in 6 years, despite Spain lacking agreed government for last 10 months

Spain sees record fall in unemployment

World Bulletin / News Desk

For the first time in six years Spain’s unemployment rate fell below 20 percent, according to new information released on Thursday by the country’s National Statistics Institute.

In the third quarter of 2016, Spain’s unemployment rate fell to 18.91 percent. In real numbers, this means that in a country of 46 million people, around 18.5 million were actively employed, around 4.3 million unemployed and the rest were inactive.

Before the financial crisis hit in 2007, Spain’s unemployment rate was hovering at around eight percent. However, the crisis devastated Spain’s banking and construction industries; unemployment skyrocketed to a historic high of nearly 27 percent by the beginning of 2013.

Now, Spain is overcoming its highest and most persistent unemployment levels in the last 40 years -- despite not having an agreed government for the last 10 months.

Nevertheless, Spain still suffers from the second-highest unemployment levels in the European Union, after Greece. According to Eurostat, the average unemployment rate in the EU was 8.6 percent in August this year.

The vast majority of the new jobs created in the last quarter have been in the private sector. With record-breaking numbers of tourists this summer, the service sector added the most new positions.

Despite the positive trend in employment, critics point to the fact that a large part of these new contracts are temporary, which they say puts workers in more precarious positions.

Of the 15.4 million salaried workers recorded during the third quarter of 2016, nearly one third were employed in temporary positions.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 27 Ekim 2016, 13:41