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1. Unemployment evolution in Europe since 1997

Jean-Guy Dufour

(source: Eurostat until 2002, completed until 203 for some countries according to national sources) in % of the working population (people with a job or looking for one).

Note: these figures give an idea of the important relative difference of unemployment rates in the countries of the EU'15 or in the different countries of the countries acceding on the 1st of May 2004. They show as well the big difference between these acceding countries and the ones of the EU'15. At last, they show that in the E.U.'15, the unemployment rate lowered everywhere between 1997 and 2001 with a period of sharp growth, then, it usually rose again with the new period of low growth since 2001. We can also notice that everywhere, women are more affected by unemployment than men.

Though, these figures give an estimation more or less underestimated by the real unemployment rate. For instance, in France, we can estimate they represent about 65% of the registered unemployed. In fact, this underestimation is also very variable from one country to another. Indeed, it hides essentially the precarious work and imposed part-time work phenomenon corresponding to short-time working and often to situations of great poverty. This phenomenon is for instance very important in the United Kingdom, which makes apparently good statistics relative.

in %1997199819992000200120022003
(women and men)
10 new acceding countries the 1st of may
2004 (women and men)
10 new acceding countries the 1st of may
2004 (women)
Germany 9,79,18,47,87,88,6 
Austria 4,44,53,93,73,64,3 
Belgium 9,29,38,66,96,77,38,0
Denmark 5,24,94,84,44,34,5 
Spain 1715,212,811,310,611,311,6
Finland 12,711,410,29,89,19,1 
France 11,811,410,79,38,58,79,7
Greece 9,810,911,811,010,410,0 
Ireland 9,97,55,64,33,94,4 
Italy 11,611,711,310,49,49,0 
Luxembourg 2,72,72,42,32,12,8 
Netherlands 5,94,84,23,83,44,15,3
Portugal 6,85,14,54,14,15,1 
United Kingdom 6,96,25,95,45,05,1 
Sweden 9,98,26,75,64,94,9 
Chyprus    5,24,43,8 
Estonia 9,69,211,312,511,89,1 
Hungary 9,08,46,96,35,65,6 
Latvia  14,314,013,712,812,8 
Lithuania  11,811,215,716,113,1 
Poland 10,910,213,416,418,519,9 
Slovakia   16,718,719,418,6 
Slovenia 6,97,47,26,65,86,0 
Czech Republic  6,48,68,78,07,3 

Euromarches are working to be able to give much more significant information on all theses issues in the future.