Registered unemployment in Catalonia drops by 1.11%, the fifth consecutive monthly reduction
By the end of July there were 6,859 fewer people registered at the Catalan Public Employment Service (SOC) than a month ago, which leaves the total number of registered unemployed individuals at 610,429. The current amount of jobseekers is now the same level as September 2011. Unemployment levels have been decreasing in Catalonia for the last five consecutive months. In addition, last July’s drop is the most significant reduction in this month of the year since 2010. In the whole of Spain, the unemployment rate decreased by 1.36%, with 64,866 fewer people registered at the Public Employment Service offices. This means that by the end of July there were 4,698,814 individuals registered as unemployed in Spain. The Catalan Government states that, if the trend is kept during the second semester, the economic crisis would have reached “its lowest level” earlier this year.
Barcelona (ACN).- By the end of July there were 6,859 fewer people registered at the Catalan Public Employment Service (SOC) than a month ago, which represents a 1.11% drop compared to June. The decrease leaves the total number of registered unemployed in Catalonia at 610,429 individuals, according to data released on Friday by the Spanish Employment Ministry. This is the lowest total figure since September 2011. Compared to the same time last year the registered unemployment level in Catalonia has decreased by 0.66%. Unemployment levels have been decreasing in Catalonia for the last five consecutive months. In addition, last July’s drop is the most significant reduction in this month of the year since 2010. In the whole of Spain, unemployment decreased by 1.36%, with 64,866 fewer people registered at the Public Employment Service offices, the highest drop since July 2010. This means that by the end of July there were 4,698,814 individuals registered as unemployed in Spain, following a trend of five consecutive months of unemployment reductions. However, unlike Catalonia, in the whole of Spain unemployment increased by 2.43% compared to a year ago. The Catalan Government is satisfied with July’s unemployment reduction, but it refuses to talk about an economic recovery just yet. The Catalan Business and Employment Minister, Felip Puig, stated that, if the trend is kept during the second semester, it will mean that the economic crisis would have reached “its lowest level” earlier this year. However, he insisted in the need to wait for August and September’s results, which are the months when unemployment traditionally increases due to the end of temporary summer jobs.
In annual terms, registered unemployment decreased by 0.66%
Registered unemployment in Catalonia has decreased for the past five successive months, with monthly drops between February and July. This statistical behaviour also happened in 2012, which also had five consecutive monthly reductions between February and July. However, by the end of July 2012 there were 614,800 registered jobseekers in Catalonia, while in July 2011 there were 570,900. This means that, while in the last 12 months unemployed decreased by 0.66%, from July 2011 to July 2012, it grew by 7.69%. In 2011 and 2010, there were only four consecutive months with unemployment drops (in both cases between March and July).
Large reductions in the service, construction and industrial sectors
The unemployment reduction has been particularly intense due to the seasonal jobs in the service sector and particularly within the tourism industry. The service sector was responsible for reducing the number of people registered on the SOC lists by 2,536 people.
The industrial sector reduced its unemployment figures by 1,536, mostly due to the positive export figures. Finally, the agricultural sector reduced the number of jobseekers by 185 individuals. The construction sector should be mentioned as it continues to reduce its registered unemployment figures. However, this reduction is mostly due to the fact that the people who have previously worked in the construction sector have now exhausted all the unemployment benefits and grants and have decided to leave the SOC lists. The number of registered jobseekers in the construction sector decreased by 2,217 individuals this July.
Unemployment among foreign-nationals continues to drop
The unemployment figures among the immigrant population continue to decrease since many of them have left the country in order to search for new job opportunities. By the end of July there were 4,374 fewer foreign-nationals registered on the SOC lists, leaving their total number at 119,578 jobseekers. This represents a 3.53% monthly drop, significantly higher than the 1.11% Catalan average. Compared to last year, the number of registered unemployed foreign-nationals decreased by 9,347 individuals, this represents a 7.25% annual drop. This is the highest drop in all the Autonomous Communities, followed by the region of Madrid, where the number of foreign-nationals decreased by 2,880 individuals compared to June and by 6,241 compared to a year ago.
Unemployment drops throughout Catalonia
Registered unemployment decreased in all the Catalan provinces. In the Province of Barcelona – where two thirds of Catalonia’s population live – unemployment dropped by 0.61%, reducing its total figure by 2,849 individuals compared to June and reaching a total of 462,961 jobseekers. In annual terms, registered unemployment decreased by 0.83% in the Barcelona Province, with 3,878 fewer people than in July 2012.
The Province of Lleida – in western Catalonia – is the area where unemployment decreased the most in relative terms, dropping by 3.85%. This represents 1,128 fewer people than a month ago, which leaves the total number of jobseekers at 28,171. Compared to July 2012 the figures have been reduced by 610 jobseekers, a 2.12% annual drop.
In the Province of Girona – in north-eastern Catalonia (where the Costa Brava is located) – registered unemployment dropped by 2.53%. This represents 1,356 fewer people than a month ago and leaves the total number of jobseekers at 52,271. However, compared to a year ago, registered unemployment increased by 137 individuals, a 0.26% growth. In fact, Girona is the only Catalan Province with an annual unemployment increase.
Finally, the Province of Tarragona had an unemployment reduction of 1,526 individuals, a 2.23% drop compared to June’s figures. By the end of July in Tarragona there were 67,026 jobseekers, 12 fewer people than a year ago, which represents a 0.02% annual reduction of registered unemployment.
64% of the people registered in the SOC lists were receiving public money
392,891 people of the 617,288 individuals registered as unemployed in the end of June in Catalonia (this data uses figures from last month) were receiving some sort of unemployment benefit or social grant. They represent 63.65% of the total number of registered jobseekers. The remaining 224,397 people (36.35%) were not receiving any public money. The number of people being paid the dole (the unemployment benefit) reached 205,307 people, representing 33.26% of the total jobseekers.