labour market

Catalonia leads unemployment reduction with a 7.9% drop in 2013

January 23, 2014 07:52 PM | ACN

Catalonia ended 2013 with an unemployment rate of 22.26% and a total of 820,400 people unemployed, according to the Active Population Survey (EPA) for the fourth quarter. In late 2013 Catalonia registered 64,700 fewer unemployed people compared to the last quarter of 2012. At Spanish level, the unemployment rate was set at 26.03 %, with a total of 5,896,300 unemployed people. At the end of 2013, there were 69,100 fewer unemployed than in the last quarter of 2012. Furthermore, between September and December there were 8,400 fewer jobseekers in Spain. In the same 3-month period there were 20,100 fewer jobseekers in Catalonia. The Catalan Deputy Minister for Employment stated that these figures were “the best since the start of the crisis” since “for the first time, the number of employed has increased and the number of unemployed has decreased”.

Spanish GDP to grow between 0.5% and 1% in 2014, says ESADE

January 14, 2014 07:45 PM | ACN

The “very moderate” growth expectations for 2014, between 0.5% and 1%, will make it “difficult” for the unemployment rates to fall below the current 27%. This was the conclusion of the 2014 Economic Report of Barcelona-based ESADE, one of the top business schools in the world. The main author of the report stressed that this “slow and costly” growth should contribute only in a “very reduced” way to creating new jobs in 2014. However, he also explained that the Labour Market Reform would have positive effects on employment levels in the medium and long term. The study indicates that consumption in 2014 will “remain restricted” due to the high unemployment rates and reduced wages.

Obama avoids commenting on whether Catalonia’s independence would be a risk for Europe’s growth

January 14, 2014 01:47 PM | ACN

Next to the Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy (who went to the White House), the President of the United States, Barack Obama, did not talk about Catalonia despite being asked about it directly by a journalist. Obama did not repeat the formula expressed by other international leaders – it is Spain’s internal matter – but instead preferred to avoid the issue. He did not explicitly back the Spanish PM, despite the fact that Rajoy had stated, only a few minutes earlier, that “Catalonia’s independence will not happen”. Rajoy’s meeting with Obama and the following press conference at the White House were also controversial because the Spanish Government banned several media that were covering the trip and only allowed one Catalan newspaper to attend it.

Brussels suggests Spain follow Catalonia’s plan for youth employment

November 22, 2013 07:48 PM | ACN

Speaking to the Economic Affairs Committee of the European Parliament, the European Commissioner for Employment, Lázló Andor, said that Spain should profit from its decentralised organisation to help fight youth unemployment. He suggested that the rest of Spain’s Autonomous Communities should follow the examples of Catalonia and Navarra to improve employment levels among youngsters. The European Commissioner said that Spanish authorities should take note of the plans launched by Catalonia and Navarra, where the youth unemployment situation “is better than the national average”. However, despite these levels being lower than in most of Spain, youth unemployment in Catalonia is worryingly high, at more than 53% in July.

Catalan unemployment increased by 12,921 people in October and represented the third consecutive month of growth

November 5, 2013 09:14 PM | ACN

However, in annual terms, Catalonia registered a fourth consecutive drop in unemployment figures with a 1.93 % decrease compared to October 2012 and 12,474 fewer jobseekers. By the end of October 2013, 633,832 people were registered as unemployed at the offices of the Catalan Public Employment Service (SOC), meaning a 2.08% increase since the month of September, with 12,921 extra people unemployed. These latest figures, which were released by the Spanish Ministry of Employment and Social Security, also indicate a third consecutive month of growth in unemployment. In the whole of Spain, registered unemployment also increased for the third consecutive month.

The Catalan Unemployment Rate decreases by 32,500 people to reach 22.84 %

October 24, 2013 06:36 PM | ACN

In Catalonia, the unemployment rate decreased by 32,500 people to reach 22.84%. The Spanish Labour Force Survey has recorded two consecutive semesters of decrease in the unemployment figures after new highs had been reached in early 2013. Catalonia is currently leading the country in terms of unemployment reduction: on the Spanish Scale, the latest figures indicate a drop in 72,800 people while the rate is set at 25.98%.

Unemployment in Catalonia grew by 9,253 in September but showed a 1.83% annual drop

October 2, 2013 10:34 PM | ACN

At Spanish level, unemployment increased both in monthly and annual terms. Catalonia is the Autonomous Community with the largest annual unemployment drop in absolute terms and the second highest in relative terms. The number of people registered as unemployed in Catalonia at the end of September dropped by 11,546 individuals compared to figures from a year ago, representing a 1.83% annual decrease. However, in monthly terms, registered unemployment increased by 1.51%, with 9,243 more jobseekers. September is a month with a traditional unemployment increase due to the end of summer season contracts. Last September’s unemployment increase was the lowest since 2008.

Foreign nationals are leaving Catalonia as amount of job opportunities dries up

September 20, 2013 05:47 PM | Julian Scully

Following a decade of significant increases in the amount of foreign nationals in Catalonia, it appears that many are beginning to leave as job opportunities dry up. In 2000, the percentage of foreign nationals living in Catalonia was 2.9%, while just over a decade later in 2011 this figure had increased to 15.73%. However, in the past couple of years the amount is beginning to reduce: between 2009 and 2013, 44,000 foreign nationals left Catalonia. According to the Spokesperson of non-governmental organisation SOS Racisme, Jose Peñín, immigrants are leaving as “they have less stable contracts and work in more abusive conditions”.

570,000 jobs have been lost in Catalonia since 2007, according to the trade union UGT

August 21, 2013 09:12 PM | ACN

The General Workers Union (UGT) issued a report stating that the Catalan economy experienced 567,099 job losses between 2007 and 2013. The figure represents a reduction of 16.86% on the total number of jobs that existed in Catalonia 6 years ago. While presenting the report, the UGT’s Secretary for Union Policy, Camil Ros, warned that figures do not show “a recovery of job creation”. Ros criticised the Spanish Government for “lying” and presenting macroeconomic figures in a way that “do not correspond to reality” since there are no signs of economic recovery. “At most, the job reduction has slowed down [its pace]”, he added.

Registered unemployment in Catalonia drops by 1.11%, the fifth consecutive monthly reduction

August 2, 2013 09:20 PM | 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 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.

Unemployment rate in Catalonia drops by 29,300 people to 23.85%

July 25, 2013 09:33 PM | ACN

By the end of June, there were 873,000 people in Catalonia without work and looking for employment, according to the latest Active Population Survey (EPA). This represents 29,300 fewer individuals than 3 months ago, which is the highest unemployment reduction in the second quarter of the year since 2002. However, employment levels have only increased by 11,800 people, which means that this year Catalonia has experienced the lowest increase in job creation for this period of the year since 1998. The Catalan unemployment rate is now 23.85%, while the Spanish average is 26.6%. In the whole of Spain, the number of people unemployed decreased by 225,200, which means that the total number of unemployed people is now below the psychological landmark of 6 million individuals (5,977,500).

The Catalan Parliament debates on measures to fight youth unemployment

July 24, 2013 10:00 PM | ACN / Gaspar Pericay Coll

The Catalan Parliament has devoted a two-day plenary session to debate the youth unemployment problem and how it could be reduced. According to the latest Active Population Survey (EPA), the youth unemployment rate in Catalonia reached 52.7%. This means that 1 out of 2 youngsters between 16 and 24 years old who want to work cannot find a job. Around 151,000 youngsters are unemployed in Catalonia; 64% of them worked in the service sector and 17% have never worked. The Catalan President, Artur Mas, asked to manage the proportional share of the European Union’s funds allocated to fight youth unemployment in Spain, since the Catalan Executive holds the competences.

Catalan economy has lost 595,000 jobs since 2008 according to a trade union report

July 13, 2013 01:59 AM | CNA

The Workers Commissions trade union (CCOO) has issued a study calculating that 595,000 jobs have been lost in Catalonia since 2008. Furthermore, the number of unemployed people has increased by 428,000 individuals. The study also revealed that the active population was reduced by 85,900 people (-2.3%) between 2011 and the last quarter of 2012. The Socio-Economy Secretary of CCOO said at the presentation of the study that “there are no objective indications of a short-term recovery of the economy or employment levels”.

SEAT announces a temporary mass lay-off affecting 571 workers per day over four months

July 9, 2013 02:09 AM | CNA

Car manufacturer SEAT, which is part of the Volkswagen Group and is based in Greater Barcelona, has announced that the temporary mass lay-off will affect its entire staff in two phases. The first phase will be between September and December of 2013. 571 contracts per day will be temporarily suspended, in turns. In addition, the production lines for the Audi Q3 and the Seat Exceo will be closed for 16 days, affecting 2,800 employees. The Exceo car model will no longer be produced as of 2014. Furthermore, there will be a second phase of temporary lay-offs next year, when the Set Leon’s production line will be closed for 35 days, affecting 3,800 workers. The company explained that the decision was taken “after having exhausted all the internal flexibility measures”.

Unemployment drops by 24,878 people in Catalonia, registering the largest drop in June since 1996

July 2, 2013 11:12 PM | CNA

Registered unemployment in Catalonia decreased by 3.87% in June compared to the previous month’s figures. June is a month when unemployment tends to be reduced due to summer jobs, but last month registered the highest drop since 1996. The total number of people registered as unemployed at the Catalan Public Employment Service (SOC) by the end of June reached 617,288 individuals. However, compared to a year ago, registered unemployment increased by 1,712 people, 0.28% more than in June 2012. In the whole of Spain, registered unemployment also increased in annual terms (+3.2%) and decreased compared to a month ago (-2.6%). Catalonia is the Autonomous Community where unemployment decreased the most in monthly terms. Furthermore, in the Lleida Province (Western Catalonia), unemployment also decreased in annual terms.