In January, 15.7 million people were out of work in the European Union and 13.3 million in the euro area. Year-on-year, the number of unemployed in the Union increased by almost 1.5 million. This follows from current Eurostat data.
Compared to December, the number of unemployed increased slightly, but it did not affect the unemployment rate in either the European Union or the euro area. The unemployment rate in the EU reached 7.3 in January and 8.1 percent in the euro area. In both regions, the unemployment rate rose by 0.7 percentage points year on year.
The lowest unemployment rates in January were recorded in Poland (3.1 percent), the Czech Republic (3.2), and the Netherlands (3.6). By contrast, Spain (16 percent), Lithuania (9.6), and Sweden (8.8) had the highest unemployment rates in January.
In the coming months, we can expect further stagnation or a decline in unemployment as seasonal work begins. In the medium term, economic recovery will play a key role, depending on the course of coronavirus vaccination, which will affect the rate at which anti-epidemic measures disintegrate. But the assumption is that the number of unemployed people should decrease.