Unemployment dips below 300 thousand

  • Monthly decline 3 thousand over the past six months
  • Female unemployment substantially down

In the period June-August 2008, the number of unemployed persons averaged 294 thousand, i.e. 3.8 percent of the labour force, as opposed to 4.4 percent in the same period last year. For the first time since 2002, unemployment has dropped below the 300 thousand mark. According to the latest figures released by Statistics Netherlands, unemployment diminished by an average of 3 thousand a month over the past six months.

Adjusted for seasonal variation, unemployment stood at 298 thousand in the period June-August 2008, the same as in the period May-July. Unemployment figures are based on a sample survey. Therefore, more reliable figures can be obtained by monitoring unemployment over a longer period of time. In the past six months, unemployment declined by an average of approximately 3 thousand a month. The decline has slowed down relative to 2006 en 2007, when unemployment dropped by an average of 6 thousand a month.

Within one year, unemployment diminished by 48 thousand. Women accounted for more than two thirds of the decline. In the period June-August this year, 4.6 percent of the female labour force were unemployed, as against 3.1 percent of the male labour force.