2 Jun 2012

Jobless rates high in US, euro zone

10:39 am on 2 June 2012

US and European share markets have fallen fallen following worse-than-expected US job figures.

In the United States, the Dow Jones industrial average closed down 275 points (2.2%) to end at 12,118.57 on Friday.

In Frankfurt the DAX 30 was down 3.4%, in Paris the CAC 40 fell 2.2% and London's benchmark FTSE 100 lost 1.1%.

The United States unemployment rate has risen to 8.2% casting further doubt on the strength of the economic recovery, the BBC reports.

The US economy added 69,000 jobs in May, well below forecasts. It was the smallest number created since May 2011.

There are five million fewer jobs in the US than there were when the recession began.

The participation rate, which shows the number of people employed as a proportion of the workforce, rose to 63.8% from 63.6%, reversing the decline seen in April.

17.4 million out of work in euro zone

The number of people out of work in the euro zone hit a new record in April, with 17.4 million people lacking a job.

The number of jobless rose by 110,000 from March, according to EU statistics agency Eurostat, representing the 12th monthly increase in a row.

The unemployment rate in the 17-member euro zone nevertheless remained steady at 11%.

Spain recorded the highest overall unemployment rate in April at 24.3%.

More than 3.3 million of the unemployed were people under the age of 25 - representing a youth unemployment rate of 22.2%. Spain posted the highest figure at 51.5%.