- Economic crisis - Spain - unemployment
AFP - The surge in unemployment in recession-hit Spain eased in July, official statistics showed on Friday, but the rate was still almost twice the eurozone average at nearly 18 percent.
The national statistics institute Ine, which has a different calculation method from the government, said unemployment rose to 4.1 million in July, a record since 1976.
This amounted to a jobless rate of 17.92 percent, up from 17.36 percent in the first quarter.
The rate of increase in Ine's estimate slowed from previous months, however, having surged from just under 14 percent to more than 17 percent from December to March. The government's latest figures show unemployment falling in May and June.
Spain entered recession in late 2008. Its economy, Europe's fifth largest, has been hit particularly hard by the world economic crisis after a decade-long boom driven by the construction industry came to an end.
"We expect the unemployment rate to keep rising, albeit at a decelerating rate, for the rest of this year and next," Citigroup economist Giada Giani said in a note to investors.