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Friday, July 27, 2012

Spanish unemployment hits record high

(Reuters) - Spanish unemployment hit its highest level in the second quarter since the country's return to democracy in the mid-1970s, as firms shed more staff, driven by fears of prolonged recession and a crisis of confidence among consumers.

The jobless rate rose to 24.6 percent from 24.4 percent in the first quarter, the National Statistic Institute said on Friday, below a Reuters forecast of 24.9 percent. The number of unemployed Spaniards rose to 5.7 million.

"It's another example of the dire position the economy is in, and with the economy unlikely to expand anytime soon, and probably more likely to fall deeper into recession, things are only going to get worse," economist at Capital Economics Ben May said.

The headline figure was the highest since current records began in 1976, the year after Spain's dictatorship ended with the death of Francisco Franco. Read More