The Baltic Course
The average seasonal unemployment rate in the 27 European Union member states this past August was 6.9%; the lowest unemployment rates were registered in Netherlands (2.6%), Denmark (2.9%, July), Austria (3.3%), Cyprus (3.6%), Estonia (4%), Luxembourg and Slovenia (4.2%), Czech Republic (4.3%) and Lithuania (5.1%).
The unemployment rate in Latvia, 6.5%, was the eleventh highest in the EU, according to the latest data from the EU statistical bureau Eurostat.
On the other hand, the highest rates were registered in Spain (11.3%), Slovakia (9.9%), France (8%), Hungary (7.9%) and Portugal and Greece (7.5%, second quarter of 2008).
Over the past twelve months, unemployment decreased in nineteen EU member states and increased in eight. Unemployment rose the most in Spain (from 8.3% to 11.3%) and Ireland (from 4.5% to 6.2%), whereas the biggest falls were registered in Poland (from 9.2% to 6.7%) and Austria (from 4.7% to 3.3%).
The unemployment rate in the United States was 6.1%, and in Japan 4.2%.