The euro area (EA16) seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 9.6% in August 2009, compared with 9.5% in July. It was 7.6% in August 2008. The EU27 unemployment rate was 9.1% in August 2009, compared with 9.0% in July. It was 7.0% in August 2008. For the euro area this is the highest rate since March 1999 and for the EU27 since March 2004.
Eurostat estimates that 21.872 million men and women in the EU27, of which 15.165 million were in the euro area, were unemployed in August 2009. Compared with July, the number of persons unemployed increased by 236 000 in the EU27 and by 165 000 in the euro area. Compared with August 2008, unemployment went up by 5.008 million in the EU27 and by 3.224 million in the euro area.
These figures are published by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities.
Among the Member States, the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in the Netherlands (3.5%) and Austria (4.7%), and the highest rates in Spain (18.9%) and Latvia (18.3%).
Compared with a year ago, all Member States recorded an increase in their unemployment rate. The smallest increases were observed in Belgium (7.5% to 7.9%) and Germany (7.2% to 7.7%). The highest increases were registered in Latvia (7.4% to 18.3%) and Estonia (4.1% to 13.3% between the second quarters of 2008 and 2009).
Between August 2008 and August 2009, the unemployment rate for males rose from 7.0% to 9.4% in the euro area and from 6.7% to 9.1% in the EU27. The female unemployment rate increased from 8.3% to 9.8% in the euro area and from 7.5% to 9.0% in the EU27.
In August 2009, the youth unemployment rate (under-25s) was 19.7% in the euro area and 19.8% in the EU27. In August 2008 it was 15.6% and 15.5% respectively. The lowest rate was observed in the Netherlands (6.3%), and the highest rates in Spain (39.2%) and Lithuania (31.2% in the second quarter of 2009).
The unemployment rate was 9.7% in the USA in August 2009. In Japan it was 5.7% in July 2009.