High unemployment to continue haunting the EU

José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission (second from left), went to Paris, where he took part in a discussion on European competitiveness with Members of the European Roundtable of Industrialists (ERT), Angela Merkel, German Federal Chancellor (at the podium), François Hollande, President of the French Republic and Leif Johansson, Chairman of the ERT (first from left). The integrity of the euro area had been preserved, the recovery was there, but the economic crisis is not over. Unemployment rates were still quite high.

José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission (second from right), went to Paris, where he took part in a discussion on European competitiveness with Members of the European Roundtable of Industrialists (ERT), Angela Merkel, German Federal Chancellor (at the podium), François Hollande, President of the French Republic and Leif Johansson, Chairman of the ERT (first from right). The integrity of the euro area had been preserved, the recovery was there, but the economic crisis is not over. Unemployment rates were still quite high.

Eurostat, the EU statistical service, revealed yesterday that the “euro area (EA18) seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 12% in January 2014, unchanged since October 2013”. The number of people without a job though increased in January 2014 to 19,175 from 19,158 thousand in December 2013. The rate of unemployment remains obstinately stuck to those very high levels since many months, always on the rise during the last few years. In January 2013 it was quoted at 12%.

This is an uneasy reality. It could have been worse if a large number of unemployed in countries like Romania and Bulgaria hadn’t decided to move to another EU country in search of a job. Anything between one twentieth to one tenth of working age people in Romania and Bulgaria left their country during the past ten years searching a better life elsewhere in the EU.

Despite the fact that everybody in Brussels insists that the “recovery in the European Union is gaining ground and spreads across countries”, the uneasy fact remains that this anemic growth doesn’t seem to positively affect the labour market by reducing the number of people without a job. Even if one accepts that theoretically an increase of the GDP is felt in the labour market only after many months, this doesn’t seem to be the case in the Eurozone. GDP grew by 0.3% during the second quarter of last year but unemployment kept rising or stagnating in many member states.

Which recovery?

However, it’s not only unemployment that keeps emitting negative signals. The widely advertised recovery is also questionable. Yesterday the European Sting writer George Pepper concluded that “Combining the two findings (slight improvements in the Economic Sentiment and the Business Climate indicators during February), it becomes evident that the internal state of the economy doesn’t help the industrial sector much. If it wasn’t for the small increases in the export order book, both the Business Climate Indicator and the Economic Sentiment would have fallen in February, following the deterioration in consumer confidence”.

In detail now, Eurostat found that among the EU member states, ‘’the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in Austria (4.9%), Germany (5.0%) and Luxembourg (6.1%), and the highest in Greece (28.0% in November 2013) and Spain (25.8%). Compared with a year ago, the unemployment rate increased in thirteen member states, fell in thirteen and remained stable in Austria and Slovenia. The highest increases were registered in Cyprus (14.4% to 16.8%), Greece (26.3% to 28.0% between November 2012 and November 2013), Croatia (17.4% to 18.8%), Italy (11.8% to 12.9%) and the Netherlands (6.0% to 7.1%). The largest decreases were observed in Latvia (14.3% to 11.5% between the fourth quarters of 2012 and 2013), Portugal (17.6% to 15.3%), Hungary (11.1% to 8.8% between December 2012 and December 2013), Ireland (13.8% to 11.9%), and Lithuania (12.8% to 11.3%).“

Employment and growth

It becomes evident that apart from the unseen before unemployment rates in the south of Eurozone, unemployment increases even in Holland, a core EU country. Of course there are good reasons for all those negative developments. Deleveraging and rebalancing of financial accounts by all and every economic agent has spread from the sovereigns and the banking sector to consumers and private businesses. As stated above, if the small increases in the export order books of industrial firms were not real, this core economic sector would have receded and with it, the anemic overall growth would have been reversed towards the negative part of the graph.

Unfortunately, the news from the rest of the world is not encouraging and the demand for European exports may fall sharply. The expected outflow of capital from the developing world may accelerate. If this will be the case, a large number of developing countries will be obliged to apply austerity policies, with negative repercussions on growth rates or even recession. In such an environment, EU exports will pay a dear price and the anemic growth rates will disappear.

All in all, if the EU consumer doesn’t wake up soon to trigger an internally driven strong growth Eurozone will continue oscillating above and below the zero level of the graph.

 

Advertising

the sting Milestone

Featured Stings

Can we feed everyone without unleashing disaster? Read on

These campaigners want to give a quarter of the UK back to nature

How to build a more resilient and inclusive global system

Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year

Retirees will outlive their savings by a decade

India’s 1.3 billion residents start 21-day lockdown – Today’s coronavirus updates

Why we need a Paris Agreement for nature

EU Facility for Refugees in Turkey: €6 billion to support refugees and local communities in need fully mobilised

How to build a paradise for women. A lesson from Iceland

New European frontiers for renewable energy development

The reason the world showed limited empathy to the Orlando victims

Health inequalities in the 21st century

Millions at risk if Syria’s war moves to last redoubt of Idlib, warns senior aid official

Me and China

UN human rights chief warns of women’s rights complacency

The entire Australian state of New South Wales is in drought

Trade war or not New York bankers will have it their way

Huge areas of the Arctic are on fire – here’s what that means for the planet

ECB with an iron hand disciplines the smaller Eurozone member states; latest victim: Greece

Urgent action needed to address growing opioid crisis

Bill Gates’ top 10 breakthrough technologies of 2019

UN expresses concern following wave of street protests in Iraq and elsewhere

The EU Consumer Policy on the Digital Market: A Behavioral Economics View

The world needs a grand coalition to tackle climate change

US, Russia oblige each other in Syria and Ukraine selling off allies

Quantum leap: why the next wave of computers will change the world

Pandemic: another look at the self

Infrastructural and system barriers to Universal Health Coverage: get in my patient’s shoes

5G mobile is nearly here – but we should share networks to make it affordable

‘No safe level of air pollution’: Major study links cardiac arrests with fine particulate matter exposure

One small flight for a drone, one ‘big leap’ for global health

Is poverty and exclusion the necessary price for EU’s recovery?

Why exchange programs are essential for the medical students of the 21st century

Road injuries leading cause of death for the young, despite safety gains: UN report

‘World has failed’ victims of genocide too often: Guterres

The MH17 tragedy to put a tombstone on Ukrainian civil war

Can we measure the temperature of human cells? A young scientist explains

We must help developing countries escape commodity dependence

“Is Europe innovative? Oh, Yes we are very innovative!”, Director General of the European Commission Mr Robert-Jan Smits on another Sting Exclusive

2016 crisis update: the year of the Red Fire Monkey burns the world’s markets down

The deforestation risks lurking in the banking sector

Novartis and Johnson & Johnson to deprive Europeans of their right to Health

October’s EU strong digital mix: From Safe Harbour to Net Neutrality, Roaming and Snowden

It’s time for global businesses to accept local responsibility

Destabilizing Lebanon after burning Syria; plotting putsch at home: King and Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia

Human rights chief calls for international probe on Venezuela, following ‘shocking accounts of extrajudicial killings’

CO2 emissions around the world

Quality Education on the table at the European Parliament

As the inventor of copy and paste dies, here are other computing innovations we take for granted

6 innovative technologies about to transform our infrastructure

Wednesday’s Daily brief: Day 3 of anti-hatred summit, UNFPA turns 50, Ben Stiller #WithRefugees, updates on Abyei

Is Data Privacy really safe seen through Commissioner’s PRISM?

Berlin vies for a Germanic European Central Bank

Parliament wants to suspend EU accession negotiations with Turkey

Changing the EU copyright law won’t bring us much closer to Digital Single Market

Top UN officials sound alarm as Yemen fighting nears vital hospital in port city of Hudaydah

Eurozone has practically entered a deflation trap

ILO’s Bureau for Employers´Activities to publish new study on women in business and management

COP21 Breaking News_05 December: Children Will Bear the Brunt of Climate Change: UNICEF

‘Unconscionable’ to kill aid workers, civilians: UN Emergency Coordinator

Ebola outbreak in DR Congo declared over, now let’s tackle other health challenges: WHO chief

Electronic cigarette: a still controversial qualitative imbalance

Ahead of State of the Union the European Youth Forum highlights lack of action on youth employment

UN chief hails ‘positive developments’ towards ending political crisis in Bolivia

More Stings?

Advertising

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s