Italian unemployment reaches new high of 11.2%

Up 0.1% on November, 1.8% on December 2011

Italian unemployment reaches new high of 11.2%

Rome, February 1 - Unemployment in recession-hit Italy reached a new high of 11.2% in December, Istat said on Friday. The figure is 0.1% higher than in November and 1.8% up on the same month in 2011. The national statistics agency said it was the highest level since it started producing monthly unemployment figures in January 2004. The last time unemployment was recorded as being higher was in the first quarter of 1999, Istat said. It added that 22.723 million people were employed in Italy in December, down 104,000 (0.5%) on November, and 278,000 (1.2%) on the same month in 2011. Well over a third of very young people are out of work, with the unemployment rate for 15-to-24-year-olds standing at 36.6% That is 0.2% lower than in November but 4.9% higher than in December 2011. Istat said 606,000 people in this age range were actively looking for work.

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