Spain has highest unemployment rate in the entire OECD

by Lorraine Williamson
Spain unemployment OECD

MADRID – Unemployment in Spain has been falling at a record pace for months in a row. Something not seen before in the history of the country. Nonetheless, it emerged on Wednesday that Spain is at the top of all OECD countries when it comes to the highest unemployment rate. 

In August 2020, 16.6% of the working population in Spain was out of work. Since then, this percentage has been falling and last October it stood at an unemployment rate of 14.5%. However, although unemployment in Spain continues to fall, Spain still tops the list of the highest unemployment of all OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) countries.

Record drop in unemployment in Spain 

In October, unemployment in Spain stood at 14.5%; a percentage that is currently 0.5% point above the unemployment rate of February 2020, the month before the coronavirus spread in Spain. 

Also in November Spain showed a record drop in the number of unemployed; in November there were more than 74,000 more people in work than in October. For nine months in a row, unemployment has been decreasing every month, which has never happened before in Spain. 

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Where do the most and the least unemployed in the OECD area live? 

When the unemployment rate of all OECD countries is compared, Spain is at the top. Colombia is in second place with an unemployment rate of 13%. Greece closes the top 3 with 12.9% unemployed. The lowest unemployment rates are recorded in the Czech Republic (2.6%) and in Japan (2.7%). 

Youth unemployment 

Youth unemployment in the OECD countries shows the following figures: 12.1% of all young people under the age of 25 in the OECD are unemployed. Greece (33.3%) and Spain (30.3%) also top this list of the highest youth unemployment rates. The fewest young people are unemployed in Japan (4.1%) and Germany (6.5%). 

Overall, the unemployment rate in the OECD zone fell to 38.3 million in October 2021. This number is still 2.8 million more than the pre-pandemic unemployment level. 

Related article: October unemployment rate in Spain falls first time in 46 years.

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