Eurozone unemployment falls to 10.4 per cent in December

The jobless rate in the eurozone fell to 10.4 per cent in December, reaching the lowest rate since September 2011, EU statistics agency Eurostat said as it released new data Tuesday.

The European currency bloc has struggled to significantly whittle down its jobless ranks, amid efforts to rev up its economy after emerging from recession more than two years ago.

Analysts had expected December unemployment to stay level at the previous month's rate of 10.5 per cent.

The number of unemployed people in the 19-member eurozone fell to 16.75 million - 49,000 fewer than in November - according to Eurostat.

Youth unemployment was much higher, at 22 per cent.

The Czech Republic joined Germany in having the lowest overall unemployment rate, both standing at 4.5 per cent.

At the other extreme, 24.5 per cent were without jobs in Greece in October - the most recent data available for the country - while youth unemployment stood at 48.6 per cent.

In the wider, 28-country European Union, joblessness remained level at 9 per cent in December, with almost 22 million people out of work, Eurostat said.

Last update: Fri, 24/06/2016 - 08:49

More from Europe

OPEC meets in Vienna to discuss possible freeze on production

Members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) met Friday in Vienna for talks about a possible...

Midwife sentenced to 15 years for trying to kill pregnant women

A 35-year-old midwife was found guilty Friday of seven counts of attempted murder and handed 15 years in prison for...

Legal challenge to Brexit dismissed by Northern Irish court

A court in Northern Ireland Friday dismissed the first legal challenge to Britain's plans to leave the European...

Pope, Lutheran leaders to meet in Sweden for Reformation anniversary

Pope Francis and Lutheran church leaders will travel to southern Sweden on Monday for the commemoration of a five-...

Germany seizes weapons cache linked to extremist who killed officer

German police have discovered a weapons stockpile belonging to an anti-government extremist who shot dead an officer...