by AFP/ pic by BLOOMBERG
BELGIUM – Unemployment in the eurozone fell to 7.4 percent in December, its lowest level since May 2008, the EU’s Eurostat data office said on Thursday.
The outcome beat forecasts by analysts surveyed by financial services provider Factset, which had predicted unemployment to remain unchanged at 7.5 percent.
Since it fell below the symbolic 10 percent threshold in September 2016, unemployment in the eurozone has been falling steadily.
At the height of the debt crisis, unemployment in the single currency area reached a record high of 12.1 percent in 2013.
Among the 19 countries in the eurozone, Germany and the Netherlands had the lowest unemployment rate in December at 3.2 percent.
The highest rates were recorded in Greece at 16.6 percent in October, the most recent data available, and Spain at 13.7 percent.
The unemployment rate across the 28 member EU was 6.2 percent in December, down from 6.3 percent a month earlier.