The Straits Times
Published on Oct 11, 2012

Greek unemployment rate scales new high


ATHENS (REUTERS) - Greece's unemployment rate hit a new record in July, with one in four now out of work, like in Spain, as a crippling recession and austerity measures continued to take a toll on the labour market.

Unemployment rose for a 35th consecutive month to 25.1 per cent in July, more than double the euro zone average and up from a revised 24.8 per cent in June, Greece's statistics service Elstat said.

The jobless rate has more than tripled since the debt-laden country's five-year recession began in 2008 and now stands at 54 per cent for those aged between 15 and 24 years, compared with 22 per cent in July 2008. A record 1.26 million Greeks were without work in July, up 43 per cent from the same month last year.

The slump in the Greek economy is expected to accelerate later this year if the government implements further budget cuts of almost ¤12 billion (S$19 billion) over the next two years as a pre-condition for more funds under its bailout.