Strong rise in unemployment at an end

An average 485 thousand people were unemployed in the Netherlands in the period May – July 2004. This is 78 thousand more than in the same period in 2003. These new figures from Statistics Netherlands indicate that the year-on-year  increase has diminished further. In the second half of 2003 unemployment rose by around 10 thousand a month; this rate of increase fell to 3 thousand a month in the last six months.

In the last three months, an average 6.4 percent of the labour force were unemployed. In the same period last year this was 5.4 percent.

Growth rate considerably slower

Unemployment is still higher than six months ago. The average increase, calculated for the last six months, has dropped to 3 thousand people a month. This has put an end to the period of strong growth in unemployment. Unemployment has risen almost continually in the last three years. The rate at which it has grown fluctuated between a few thousand an 14 thousand on average a month.

Slight fall after seasonal adjustment

Unemployment is always higher on average in the period May – July, as school-leavers enter the labour market and pupils and students start looking for holiday jobs. After correction for these seasonal effects the unemployed labour force comes to 476 thousand. This is 9 thousand down on the number for April – June 2004.

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