Unemployment in Bulgaria in December 2018 was 5.2 per cent, unchanged from November and down from 5.7 per cent in December 2017, according to seasonally-adjusted figures released by European Union statistics agency Eurostat on January 31.
The figure of 5.2 per cent in December 2018 represented about 171 000 people, according to Eurostat. While the percentage was the same as in November, the figure for that month represented about 172 000 people.
Youth unemployment in Bulgaria, in percentage terms, rose from 11.5 per cent in December 2017 to 12.8 per cent in December 2018, according to Eurostat. However, the statistics agency’s estimates were that both percentages represented about 19 000 people among Bulgaria’s under-25s.
Bulgaria’s December 2018 unemployment rate was below the EU average for that month, which was 6.6 per cent, stable compared with November 2018 and down from 7.2 per cent in December 2017. This remains the lowest rate recorded in the EU28 since the start of the EU monthly unemployment series in January 2000.
The euro area (EA19) seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 7.9 per cent in December 2018, stable compared with November 2018 and down from 8.6 per cent in December 2017. This remains the lowest rate recorded in the euro area since October 2008.
Among EU countries, the lowest unemployment rates in December 2018 were recorded in the Czech Republic (2.1 per cent), Germany (3.3 per cent), Poland (3.5 per cent) and the Netherlands (3.6 per cent).
Unemployment was highest in Greece (18.6 per cent in October 2018), Spain (14.3 per cent) and Italy (10.3 per cent).
Compared with a year ago, unemployment rate fell in all EU countries, except France where it remained stable. The largest decreases were registered in Greece (from 21 per cent to 18.6 per cent between October 2017 and October 2018), Spain (from 16.5 per cent to 14.3 per cent) and Croatia (from 9.7 per cent to 7.7 per cent).
In December 2018, 3.365 million young people (under 25) were unemployed in the EU28, of whom 2.391 million were in the euro area.
Compared with December 2017, youth unemployment decreased by 249 000 in the EU28 and by 141 000 in the euro area.
In December 2018, the youth unemployment rate was 14.9 per cent in the EU28 and 16.6 per cent in the euro area, compared with 16.1 per cent and 17.8 per cent respectively in December 2017.
In December 2018, the lowest rates were observed in the Czech Republic (5.8 per cent), Germany (six per cent) and the Netherlands (6.6 per cent), while the highest were recorded in Greece (38.5 per cent in October 2018), Spain (32.7 per cent) and Italy (31.9 per cent), Eurostat said./ΙΒΝΑ