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Tourism helps Spanish unemployment shrink, but most new jobs temporary

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Tourism helps Spanish unemployment shrink, but most new jobs temporary
Plaza Mayor in Madrid. Photo: Gerard Julien/AFP
10:40 CEST+02:00
Spain's jobless queue shortened once more in the third quarter, official figures showed on Thursday, as seasonal work and temporary contracts boomed during the country's thriving tourist summer.

Unemployment in the period from July to September stood at 16.4 percent, down from 17.2 percent in the previous quarter, the National Statistics Institute said.

The number of people out of work fell to 3.7 million at the end of September from 3.9 million at the end of June.

The third quarter is prime tourism season, and the services sector created the most jobs -- 236,400 -- as hotels, restaurants and other businesses took on extra staff.

While Spain's unemployment rate is down from a peak of 26.9 percent in the first quarter of 2013, it is still the second-worst performer in the eurozone after Greece, and many of the jobs created are temporary contracts rather than permanent.

During the third quarter, the number of temporary contracts signed -- close to 150,000 -- was more than double the number of permanent contracts.

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