OECD unemployment rate drops slightly in August

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The OECD unemployment rate fell by 0.1 percentage point to 7.3% in August 2014. Across the OECD area, 44.4 million people were unemployed, 5.5 million less than the peak recorded in April 2010 but still 9.8 million more than in July 2008.

The unemployment rate was stable in the eurozone, at 11.5%, with a significant decline observed in Italy (by 0.3 percentage point, to 12.3%).

In August, the unemployment rate also decreased by 0.3 percentage point in Australia (to 6.1%), Japan (to 3.5%) and Mexico (to 4.9%) and by 0.1 percentage point in the United States (to 6.1%), while it was stable in Canada (at 7.0%). More recent data for September show that the unemployment rate continued to fall in the United States (by 0.2 percentage point to 5.9%).

Changes in unemployment rates differ across age groups. While the OECD unemployment rate was stable in August among the over 25s (at 6.3%), youth unemployment (15-24) decreased by 0.3 percentage points (to 14.7%).

However youth unemployment remains exceptionally high in several Euro area countries, with more than one active youth in two unemployed in Greece (51.5% in June, the latest month available) and Spain (53.7%) and more than one in three unemployed in Portugal (35.6%) and Italy (44.2%, an increase of 1.0 percentage point in August). The unemployment rate fell by 0.1 percentage point for both women (to 7.4%) and men (to 7.2%).



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