Unemployment still rising

According to figures released by Statistics Netherlands, there were 516 thousand registered unemployed in the Netherlands in the period February-April 2005. If seasonal effects are taken into account, unemployment amounted to half a million, an increase by 3 thousand compared to the period January-March 2005.

Over the last three months 6.9 percent of the Dutch labour force were unemployed. Twelve months ago 6.7 percent were unemployed.

Marginal annual increase

In the period February-April 2005 the number of unemployed was 16 thousand higher than in the same period one year previously. It is the smallest annual change since early 2002. Over the last twelve months the unemployment rate went up and down. In the summer of 2004 there was a small decline in unemployment, followed by six months in which unemployment rose by an average 4 thousand per month. Over the last six months the growth rate was stable.

Unemployment rate among unemployed over-45s all but stable

The percentage of unemployed in the age category 45-64 rose to 141 thousand in the period February-April 2005, i.e. 7 thousand more than one year previously. The population aged 45-64 has been growing for years and the number of 45-64 year-olds active on the labour market grew proportionally. The amount of unemployed over the age of 45, however, remained virtually stable at 5.4 percent.

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