Unemployment in the European Union, January 1992 – June 2012 (2 graphs)
from Merijn Knibbe
Eurostat has published the June data on unemployment. The percentage has not changed but the number of unemployed has increased with 123.000 (Eurozone) and 4.000 (non Eurozone). The May data have been revised with +0,1% because of a sizeable upward revision of the Italian figures (the second in a relatively short time).
Differences between north and south are still increasing (graph 1), though differences between the northern countries are also starting to show (i.e: differences between Germany and the rest). Countries like Austria and the Netherlands, wich until recently did quite well, are at this moment also experiencing unemployment increases, contrary to Germany. Unemployment in Denmark, a country which before the crisis had a government surplus of 5% of GDP and is famous for it’s supposedly highly efficient ‘flexicurity’ labor market, is bound to break a new unemployment record quite soon as the economy is suffering from the combined effects of a very high exchange rate, falling house prices and of course the present economic set-back.
The extent of the German success is of course also and even more remarkable (+790.000 jobs in 2011, see however this). Contrary to (for instance) Denmark, it does not suffer from a high exchange rate or the deflating of a housing price bubble and it has of course world-class products and competitive companies (no low wages, by the way). Even then, it has weathered the set-back quite well – despite still very moderate increases of retail sales.