OECD says unemployment rate still near highs

The unemployment rate  in leading industrialised countries was steady at 8.5 percent in July as in June but down from 8.6 percent in May, the OECD said on Tuesday.

The overall rate of unemployment in 30 of the 33 countries in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development is close to the highest level since World War II, the OECD said.

The total number of unemployed in OECD countries was 45.5 million in July, an increase of 13.4 million since July last year.

Data for recent members Chile, Israel and Slovenia was not included.

In August, the US unemployment rate edged up 0.1 percentage point to 9.6 percent and by the same margin in Canada to 8.1 percent.

“The general pattern of broad stability holds in most OECD countries,” the OECD said in reference to the July data.

In July, Spain had the highest unemployment rate among OECD countries of 20.3 percent, followed by the Slovak Republic with 15 percent, Ireland 13.6 percent, Portugal 10.8 percent and Hungary 10.3 percent.

South Korea had the lowest rate of 3.7 percent followed by Austria with 3.8 percent.

Source: AFP

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