EU Unemployment Hits All-Time High

Greece, Spain hit especially hard

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 8, 2013 8:22 AM CST

(Newser) – Eurozone unemployment hit 11.8% in November, leaving a record 18.8 million out of work, according to data released today by the EU's official statistics agency. The figure, the highest recorded since the currency union formed in 1999, is only a touch higher than October, but a full 1.2 percentage points above where it was last year. Things aren't much better in the broader 27-nation European Union, which saw its jobless ranks swell to more than 26 million for the first time, the AP reports.

Unsurprisingly, the hardest hit nations were Greece, which saw its rate jump a whopping 7.1 points year-over-year to 26%, and Spain, which, with a rate of 26.6%, had the highest unemployment overall. By contrast, Austria, Germany, and Luxembourg are all sitting pretty, with rates ranging from 4.5% to 5.4%.

In this March 29, 2012 file photo a woman sits alone in corridor in front of job consultants offices at the employment bureau 'Arbeitsagentur' in Berlin, Germany.
In this March 29, 2012 file photo a woman sits alone in corridor in front of job consultants offices at the employment bureau 'Arbeitsagentur' in Berlin, Germany.   (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, File)
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