Greek Jobless Rate Drops to Fresh 2-1/2-Year Low


Greek unemployment rate decreased slightly to 24 percent in December of 2015 compared to an upwardly revised 24.4 percent in the previous month. It was the lowest rate recorded since May of 2012, as the number of unemployed reached 1.14 million people while employment rose to 3.65 million. Unemployment has come down from record highs but remains more than double the Eurozone's average of 10.3 percent in January.

Compared to the previous month, the number of unemployed decreased by 1.7 percent, to 1,149.7 thousand persons while the number of employed rose by 0.5 percent to 3,649.4 thousand. The number of inactive fell slightly by 0.1 percent to 3,267.2 thousand persons. A year earlier, the unemployment rate was recorded at 25.9 percent. The number of unemployed persons fell by 7 percent while employment rose by 3.2 percent. The number of inactive persons declined by 2.1 percent.

Unemployment continued to affect mainly people aged 15 to 24 years as 48.9 percent of young active population was unemployed, a decrease of 2.3 percentage points from the same month in the previous year. While the majority of age groups recorded a lower jobless rate when compared to a year earlier, the unemployment rate among people aged 55 to 64 rose further to 18.1 percent (from 16.7 percent).

The unemployment rate for males decreased by 2.5 percentage points to 20.5 percent from 23 percent in December 2014 and for females it was down by a much slower 1.3 percentage points to 28.3 percent when compared to 29.6 percent last year.

Among regions, the highest unemployment rates were reported for Thessaly – Sterea Ellas (28.7 percent) and Epirus-Western Macedonia (28.3 percent), while Aegean continued to record the lowest rate (15.3 percent).

Greece's economy expanded slightly by 0.1 percent on the quarter in the three months to December 2015, driven by private consumption and investment, while it shrank by 0.7 percent year-on-year. Considering full 2015, the GDP contracted by 0.3 percent 

ELSTAT | Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
3/10/2016 10:55:37 AM