Saturday, January 26th 2013 - 04:26 UTC

Spain’s jobless soars to 26%; 1.8 million households with no member employed

Spain’s unemployment rate shot up to a record 26% in the fourth quarter of 2012, leaving almost six million people out of work, the National Statistics Institute said on Friday. The rate rose from 25% in the third quarter as the country’s recession deepened.

The economy contracted 1.3% in 2012 according to estimates from the Central bank

Over the year, 691,700 more people lost their jobs, the institute said, adding that there were now 1.8 million households in which no one was employed.

Spain is in the throes of its second recession in just over three years following the collapse of its once-booming real estate sector in 2008.

Battling to reduce a swollen deficit and avoid a bailout, the year-old conservative government has made major financial and labour reforms and applied severe austerity measures such as cutbacks in wages and spending as well as tax increases.

The austerity measures are aimed at lowering the deficit, but are hurting the economy in the short-term, while the reforms will only help growth in the longer-term. That means the economy will suffer more before it recovers.

The central bank this week estimated that the recession deepened in the fourth quarter of last year, the economy shrinking by 0.6% compared with the previous three-month period.

It was the sixth consecutive quarterly contraction. The economy contracted by 0.4% in the third quarter. The bank estimated economic activity was down 1.7% in the fourth quarter from the year-earlier period and down 1.3% for the whole of 2012.

The statistics institute will announce official economic growth figures on January 30, while Europe’s main statistics office Euro-stat unveils its estimate on February 14.

8 comments Feed

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1 brucey-babe (#) Jan 26th, 2013 - 12:25 pm Report abuse
6 million out of work, perhaps we should make it 7 million if they continue with giving Gibraltar hassle. Holiday in Greece !
2 CaptainSilver (#) Jan 26th, 2013 - 01:05 pm Report abuse
I feel sorry for the Spanish people. Once they had it all then they lost it, then that Nazi after a civil war, then a taste of freedom and democracy and now this awful scourge of unemployment. Amongst youngsters unemployment is apparently a staggering 60%!
When I was in London for a week recently it was evident that huge numbers of young Spanish people have migrated to Britain in search of work and to improve their English.
Gibraltar has had referendums and its quite clear that they wish to remain aligned with Britain. The Spanish have colonies off Morroco so they can't complain.
3 ElaineB (#) Jan 26th, 2013 - 01:21 pm Report abuse
@2 Yes, a lot have come to the UK, especially if they know someone with a business here. Also Germany where they take intensive language courses in order to be able to work.

I admire their desire to work.
4 warteiner (#) Jan 26th, 2013 - 02:02 pm Report abuse
@3: “I admire their desire to work.”

Have you ever worked in Spain with Spanish people?

If you had, you wouldn't be saying that.
5 andy65 (#) Jan 26th, 2013 - 02:05 pm Report abuse
I live in a coastal resort running aa business, the Spanish are here everyday with there CVs I feel sorry but have to remind them most European countrys are suffering with high unemployment I did mention to one to try Crissy in Argentina she might be able to help
6 ElaineB (#) Jan 26th, 2013 - 02:42 pm Report abuse
@4 I have worked with Spanish people in London; twas all good. I think people adapt the work ethic to their environment or risk losing their job; more so if they are young and desperate. It takes some effort to seek work in a new country rather than sit back and complain in their own country. I give them credit for that.

A lot of the young people looking for work in the UK and Germany are skilled and well qualified in their field. The only thing holding them back is the language barrier, less so with English. I think they would have more luck in Germany where unemployment is lower but not many seem to speak German.
7 RICO (#) Jan 26th, 2013 - 06:13 pm Report abuse
Unfortunately for Spain their best are probably leaving, the least able and the least flexible remain.

This is in stark comparison with the 16th century where it was the genocidal psychopaths and the genetically disposed habitual liars who left the country seeking riches.
8 St.John (#) Feb 02nd, 2013 - 03:12 pm Report abuse
@ 6 ElaineB

I agree.

Not just Spaniards adopt to Northern European work habits, Argentinos do as well. It is, however, strange that when they return to Argentina I have seen them “forget” everything they learned and did in Europe, again being late for meetings, socializing three to four hours out of eight, etc.

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