Swedish jobless rate rises in August
Published: 13 Sep 2010 15:02 GMT+02:00
Updated: 13 Sep 2010 15:02 GMT+02:00
More than 400,000 Swedes, or 8.1 percent of the workforce, were registered as not having jobs in August, up from 7.7 percent last year, new statistics show.
According to the Swedish Public Employment Service (Arbetsförmedlingen), a total of 407,000 had registered with the agency as unemployed or were participating in agency-sponsored programmes to get people back in the workforce.
While the number of Swedes technically registered as unemployed fell by 20,000 in August compared to the year before, the number of people in employment support programmes rose,
Overall, 241,511 people, or 4.8 percent of the workforce, were registered as jobless with the agency.
In addition, however, 165,726 people took part in work support programmes, an increase from 118,956 last year.
But there are signs that the employment picture is improving, as 53,112 people found jobs in August, an increase of nearly 10,000 from the 43,367 who found employment during August last year.
Demand for labour has increased and more people are finding work. The number of redundancies has fallen in the autumn and is now much lower than a year ago. However, many are still unemployed, the agency said.
"We see several positive signs for the job market," said chief analyst clas Olsson in a statement.
"Employment is increasing, more jobs and more people find work. However, unemployment remains high and there is concern that the number of people in job and development guarantees continues to grow."
The country's employment offices were notified about 42,044 new positions, a sharp jump from 28,836 last year.
And only 1,865 people were given layoff notices in August, compared with 5,370 in August last year.
"It was an unusually low notice number for the month," said Hans Tydén, an analyst at the agency.
The latest figure was the lowest since July 2007. In the 1990s and 2000s, the number has been lower eight other times, according Tydén.
"Those who have jobs are fairly secure," he said.
Many job seekers are receiving help from job coaches. In August, 11,330 people turned to the agency's internal job coaches and 21,451 employed external ones. One month after coaching, 37 percent of job seekers who used coaches in July found some form of work.
The statistics reported recently show that unemployment will continue to fall. It has already begun to do, according to seasonally adjusted figures, according to Tydén.
"We should see unemployment falling in the autumn, but maybe not at such a quick pace," he said.
"Those in the front of the queue are less educated. If they have experience, it increases their chances further. However, it is probably not easy with an incomplete upper secondary education and those with immigrant backgrounds and a poor knowledge of Swedish will find it harder to get a job."
According to seasonally adjusted figures, unemployment has fallen for 25- to 44-year-olds since the winter. However, it continued to increase somewhat for those under 24 and the oldest in the job market, according to Tydén.