Greek Unemployment Rate Down to 20.7% in October

Greece’s jobless rate eased to 20.7% in October from an upwardly revised 20.8% in September, the country’s statistics service ELSTAT announced on Thursday.

Seasonally adjusted data showed the number of registered unemployed at 990,288 people, with younger persons aged up to 24 bearing the brunt of being out of work.

Among younger people aged 15 to 24, the jobless rate eased to 40.8% from 44.4% a year ago.

According to analysts, the continuous drop in unemployment in recent months is a good sign, but not a substantially positive one for the overall state of Greek economy, since average wages have been steadily dropping within the year.

The reason for this seeming contradiction is that although more jobs have opened up, most of them have been past-time ones, with wages slightly over, and sometimes under the minimum wage.

Greece’s jobless rate, which hit a record high of 27.9% in September 2013, has been coming down in recent months, but it still remains the highest in the eurozone.

Greece expects the unemployment rate to fall to 18.4% this year, based on projections in its 2018 budget draft.

Unemployment in the 19 countries sharing the euro stood at 8.8% in October, the lowest rate since January 2009, powered mostly by the growth recorded in Germany, which was stronger than expected.

Source: Reuters