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Spain sees fifth month of falling jobless figures

George Mills/The Local/AFP · 2 Aug 2013, 10:51

Published: 02 Aug 2013 10:51 GMT+02:00

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For the first time since 2007, Spain's jobless rate has fallen for five consecutive months, Spain's Employment Ministry have touted.

A total of 64,866 people — or left the unemployment queues in June, the ministry's figures show.

This means Spain has seen a 340,000 strong reduction in unemployment in the last five months.

This put the total number of people out of work at 4,698,814.

But Spanish media sources were careful to put the good news into perspective.

Total unemployment has increased by 2.43 percent since July 2012 with the jobless queues seeing 111,359 new people in the last twelve months, free daily 20minutos reported.

El País newspaper said the lower July jobless figures were a result of the 'summer effect', with temporary tourism jobs giving the numbers a facelift.

The number of new contracts signed in July was 1,507,341, or 18 percent up on June 2013.

But only 6.39 percent of these jobs were ongoing positions.

Spain has two sets of unemployment figures, providing different estimates.

Employment Ministry figures are based on the number of unemployed persons registered in their offices.

Spain's INE, however, conducts a survey (the EPA) of 65,000 Spanish households to obtain its results.

The EPA includes responses from some people who want to work but who are not registered in the employment offices.

The responses also include those who fall into other special working categories which are not recorded by the Ministry.

Story continues below…

This explains why EPA unemployment figures are much higher than those of Spain's Employment Ministry.

The latest EPA figures, released on July 25, show Spain's unemployment to be 5,977,500, or down 225,200 in the second quarter of 2013. 

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's government is forecasting a jobless rate of 26.7 percent in 2014 and 25 percent in 2015.

Spain, the eurozone's fourth-largest economy, is still struggling to overcome the aftermath of a decade-long property bubble that imploded in 2008, destroying millions of jobs and sending debt levels soaring.

George Mills/The Local/AFP (george.mills@thelocal.com)

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