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World – OECD unemployment rate falls slightly to 5.2% in September

13 November 2018

The OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) unemployment rate fell by 0.1% to 5.2% in September 2018 when compared to August. Across the OECD countries, 33.1 million people were unemployed.

Harmonised unemployment rates define the unemployed as people of working age who are without work, are available for work, and have taken specific steps to find work.

In the euro area, the unemployment rate was stable at 8.1% in September, with rates falling by 0.3% in Portugal (to 6.6%) and by 0.2% in Belgium (to 6.3%), Ireland (to 5.4%), Latvia (to 7.2%), Luxembourg (to 5.0%) and the Netherlands (to 3.7%).

By contrast, the unemployment rate in Italy increased by 0.3%, to 10.1%, after having decreased by 0.4% in the previous month.

In September, the unemployment rate fell by 0.3% in Australia (to 5.0%), by 0.2% in Korea (to 4.0%) and the United States (to 3.7%, the lowest level since December 1969), and by 0.1% in Canada (to 5.9%) and Japan (to 2.3%), while it was stable in Mexico (at 3.3%). More recent data for October show that the unemployment rate declined further, by 0.1%, in Canada (to 5.8%), while it was stable in the United States.

The OECD unemployment rate for youth (people aged 15 to 24) remained stable at 11% in September, while the rate for people aged 25 and above declined by 0.1 percentage point, to 4.5%. The youth unemployment rate remained above 30% in Italy (31.6%), Spain (34.3%) and Greece (37.9% in July, the latest month available).

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