ECONOMY & JOBS: Unemployment is lower in Madrid than Barcelona (19.52% versus 23.87%). Average salaries are also higher in Madrid: the 2011 figures were €25,845 in the capital and €24,499 in Barcelona. Madrid is also a financial centre. But Barcelona is a tourism hub with plenty of technology-focused industries. It is also very open to young expat workers. But Madrid wins by a nose here, even if it’s just because the city is so much larger and there are more jobs on offer.