The unemployment rate in the US is set to eclipse that of Western Europe for the first time on record, the New York Times reports. When April numbers for the first 15 EU members come in, the US’ 8.9% will probably be higher than Europe’s, 8.5% in March. Some economists argued that the relative lack of government involvement in the US economy made it more responsive and kept unemployment down.
“The current economic crisis has turned the case for the US model almost entirely on its head,” a group of economists wrote. But while the European average is lower than in the US, certain countries have been much harder hit. Spain, which had a similar housing bubble, now boasts 17.4% unemployment.