Still Eurozone’s Highest, Greek Jobless Rate Falls Below 20%

(Photo by Eurokinissi/Sotiris Dimitropoulos)

ATHENS – Greece’s unemployment rate, which hit a record 27.9 percent in September, 2013, fell to 19.5 percent in May but is still the highest in the Eurozone and still hitting the young the hardest, with 39.7 percent of those from 15-24 unable to find a job.

That also fell markedly, from 44 percent a year previously, but at a rate still leaving people in the age group with little hope of finding work and eight years of austerity and an economic crisis having already sent scores of thousands packing off to other countries in search of work and a better life, giving up on their homeland.

The numbers were released by the country’s statistics agency ELSTAT and the seasonally adjusted data showed there were 924,941 people out of work, with women having the highest rate at 24.1 percent compared to 15.8 percent for men.

The overall rate for May was the lowest in seven years and the government said it expects it will fall to 18.4 percent, based on a rosy 2018 budget estimate despite Prime Minister and Radical Left SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras doing almost nothing to help despite promises to put people back to work.