Spain continues to hold the crown for the worst labor market and will likely continue to hold that title with the unemployment rate’s current trajectory.
The unemployment rate in Spain has previously surpassed the 20% mark multiple times in the past and it currently stands at 14.7% which is significantly higher than the level reported towards the end of last year. Economists expected the level of unemployment to drop in Q1 this year but they continued to drop but instead, it continued to worsen. The National Statistics Institute (INE) revealed that the number of people relying on unemployment benefits during the quarter reached 3.35 million. This was more by 50,000 compared to the figure previously reported.
A tick in Spain’s unemployment rate is not uncommon in the first quarter of but it is more alarming this year because it is the biggest unemployment spike that the country has experienced in the past six years. Some of the most affected sectors include service, industry, and construction which have 69,000, 8,600 and 2,500 people respectively lost their jobs.
Although the unemployment rate in Spain is still high, there have been hopes of improvement alongside the recent economic growth reported in the country. Things are also looking up as far as job creation is concerned. About 596,900 new jobs were created over the past 12 months.
Not yet out of the woods
Despite the signs of an economic improvement accompanied by job creation, there are still concerns over the fact that the unemployment rate is still high. In fact, it is above 20% in some of Spain’s regions such as Melilla, Ceuta, and the Canary Islands.
There are also concerns that the current geopolitical and economic uncertainties in Europe may also undo the progress that Spain has been making. Spain also relies on its tourism and hospitality industry which also creates employment and revenue for many but it has lately been slowing down. Nevertheless, Spain has been trying to recover and improve its economy after taking a massive hit during the last economic crisis, during which unemployment hit a record high of more than 30 years.
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