The unemployment rate in the eurozone dropped again in November, official figures showed on Monday, as hiring withstood new coronavirus outbreaks in several member countries.
The EU’s Eurostat agency said the seasonally-adjusted jobless rate — which measures the number of people out of work as a proportion of the active population as a whole — dipped to 7.2 percent in November from 7.3 percent in October and 7.4 percent in July.
In the 27-member European Union, which includes countries such as Poland not in the single currency bloc, unemployment fell to 6.5 percent in November from 6.7 percent a month earlier.
The data were a marked improvement over a year earlier when the jobless rate stood at 8.1 percent in the euro area and 7.4 percent in the wider EU.
The agency estimates that 13.9 million EU residents were out of work in November.
Youth unemployment stood at 15.4 percent in the EU and 15.5 percent in the eurozone, also down on the previous month.
The downward trend in unemployment survived fresh outbreaks of the Delta variant in countries such as Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, suggesting that government decisions to limit restrictions had preserved their economies.
Many countries are attempting to take a similar approach in their response to the highly contagious Omicron variant, even as daily infection rates have risen to unprecedented levels across Europe.