Unemployment in the eurozone hits a record high

Joblessness in Europe has risen every month for two years - and analysts say that's unlikely to change any time soon.

by Emma Haslett
Last Updated: 07 Feb 2014

Being a young person is hard enough these days – there’s binge drinking sessions to be had, and finding enough time to properly Twitter stalk Harry Styles. To top all that off, 24.4% of under-25s in Europe were struggling to find a job in April, according to figures published by the European Commission this morning, with 3.6m out of work.

The highest figure was in Italy, where a staggering 40.5% of young people are unemployed – which makes the UK’s figure, 20.7%, look almost positive.

Among the general population, unemployment hit 12.2%, a record high, with 19.58 million people out of work in the eurozone’s 17 countries.

Greece and Spain both have unemployment rates of over 25% - while Portugal has a jobless rate of 17.8%.

It’s the 24th consecutive month that the unemployment rate has increased, and there aren’t many signs that things are going to change. Analysts are decidedly cautious about the situation – Nick Matthews, a senior economist at Nomura International, says it is now up to the European Central Bank to introduce drastic measures to improve the situation.

‘We do not expect a strong recovery in the eurozone. It puts pressure on the ECB to deliver even  more conventional and non-conventional measures,’ he says – although the jury’s out as to what exactly ‘non-conventional measures’ might constitute…

- For more on Italy's economic malaise, read our feature in this month's magazine

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