Eurozone jobless rate steady at 9.1%


Two people look at job announcements in the window of an agency in NaplesImage copyright
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The unemployment rate in the eurozone has held steady at its lowest since February 2009, according to the latest official figures.

The rate was 9.1% for July, the same as in June.

Separately, inflation rose to 1.5% in August from 1.3% in July, according to a preliminary estimate from Eurostat, the European Union’s statistics office.

Inflation in the 19-nation bloc remains well below the European Central Bank’s target of close to, but below, 2%.

The biggest driver of inflation was the cost of energy, which went up by 4%. Processed food, alcohol and tobacco prices increased by 2%.

The inflation figure was higher than expected and could put pressure on the European Central Bank to tighten its monetary policy when policymakers meet next week.

The jobless rate in Germany, the largest economy in the zone, fell from 3.8% in June to 3.7% in July, while Spain’s jobless rate, the eurozone’s highest, remained unchanged at 17.1%.

However, the French unemployment rate went up from 9.6% to 9.8%, while Italy’s rate increased from 11.2% to 11.3%.



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