Long-term unemployment down

23/04/2008 15:00

Unemployment has fallen dramatically in recent years. Initially, only among short-term unemployed, but in 2007 the reduction among long-term unemployed was more substantial than among short-term unemployed.

Unemployed labour force

Unemployed labour force

Number of long-term unemployed down by 40 thousand in 2007

The reduction in unemployment is mainly triggered off by the currently thriving economy. Since 2005, the number of people, whose unemployment period does not exceed six months has been reduced significantly. In 2007, the number of long-term unemployed dropped dramatically. The number of people unemployed for more than one year declined from 184 thousand in 2006 to 144 thousand in 2007. Still, over 40 percent of long-term unemployed have as yet not been able to re-enter the labour market.

Unemployment period by age, 2007

Unemployment period by age, 2007

Older people more often unemployed than younger people

Last year, 50 thousand people aged 55-65 were unemployed, of whom 39 thousand (78 percent) one year or more. The majority – 25 thousand – have been unemployed for two years or more. In the 15-25 age group, 80 thousand people were jobless, of whom 69 thousand were short-term unemployed. Hence, more young than older people are unemployed, but young people are usually unemployed for only a short period of time.

Unemployment period by age

Unemployment period by age

No decline among older long-term unemployed

Young and middle-aged (15-55) unemployed have benefited from the booming economy. In this age category, short as well as long-term unemployment dropped in 2007. The number of unemployed over-55s, on the other hand, rose marginally last year.

Martine Mol and Robert de Vries