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Wednesday 21.03.2018 | Name days: Una, Unigunde, Dzelme, Benedikts

Unemployment level in Latvia decreased to 8.7% in 2017

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RU85.4 thousand people aged 15–74 in Latvia were unemployed in 2017. Compared to 2016, the number of unemployed persons has dropped by 9.9 thousand or 10.4 %.

Last year, Latvian unemployment rate constituted 8.7 %, which is 0.9 percentage points lower than in 2016. Unemployment rate among females still was lower than among males – 7.7 % and 9.8 %, respectively, according to data from the Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.

Compared to Q3 2017, in the 4th quarter unemployment rate reduced by 0.4 percentage points and constituted 8.1 %. In Q4 2017, 79.7 thousand people aged 15–74 were unemployed, which is 4.4 thousand or 5.2 % less than in Q3.

Since Q3 2008, Latvian unemployment rate exceeds the European Union (EU) average (except for the 1st quarter of 2015 when both indicators were equal). In Q3 2017, Latvian unemployment rate (constituting 8.5 %) exceeded the EU average (7.3 %) by 1.2 percentage points. In Q4 2017, Latvia still had the highest unemployment rate in the Baltic States (5.3 % in Estonia and 6.7 % in Lithuania).

In 2017, the share of long-term unemployed persons, i.e., those who have been without work for 12 months or longer, in the total number of unemployed persons declined by 3.8 percentage points – from 41.5 % in 2016 to 37.7 % in 2017.  Over the year, the number of long-term unemployed persons reduced by 7.4 thousand, and in 2017 it constituted 32.1 thousand.

In Q4 2017, the share of long-term unemployed persons in the total number of unemployed persons constituted 32.5 %. Compared to Q3, the indicator decreased by 7.6 percentage points. In Q4 the year, there were 25.7 thousand unemployed persons and in Q3 – 33.6 thousand.

In 2017, youth unemployment rate constituted 17.0 %, which is 0.3 percentage points lower than a year ago (17.3 % in 2016). Out of the total number of unemployed persons, 12.1 thousand or 14.2 % were young people aged 15–24. During the year, the number of young unemployed persons fell by 0.9 thousand, whereas their share in the total number of unemployed persons grew by 0.6 percentage points.

In 2017, youth unemployment rate constituted 16.5 %, which is 1.1 percentage points lower than in Q3. The number of young unemployed persons dropped by 2.7 thousand and constituted 10.6 thousand or 13.3 % of the total number of unemployed persons (13.3 thousand or 15.8 % in Q3).

Since 2013, Latvian youth unemployment rate was lower than the EU average. In 2016, Latvian youth unemployment rate (constituting 17.3 %) was 1.4 percentage points lower than the EU average (18.7 %). In 2017, Latvia still had the highest youth unemployment rate in the Baltic States (12.1 % in Estonia and 13.3 % in Lithuania).

In 2017, 39.7 % of all young people were active, i.e., employed or actively seeking a job (unemployed), while 60.3 % of young people were inactive (mainly studying and not seeking a job).

In Q4 2017, 36.7 % of all young people were active, while 63.3 % inactive.

In 2017, 31.1 % or 433.1 thousand people aged 15–74 were inactive. i.e., were neither employed nor actively seeking a job. Compared to 2016, the number of unemployed persons dropped by 18.6 thousand or 4.0 %. In the 4th quarter, 30.7 % or 434.2 thousand people aged 15–74 were inactive. Compared to Q3, inactive population grew by 1.2 thousand people or 0.3 %.

In 2017, 18.1 thousand people or 4.1 % of the inactive population were discouraged to find a job (20.2 thousand or 4.4 % in 2016). In Q4 the year, this population accounted for 16.1 thousand people or 3.7 % (19.5 thousand people or 4.5 % in Q3 2017).

In 2017, Labour Force Survey covered 16.5 thousand households, in which 30.4 thousand people aged 15–74 were interviewed. In Q4 the year, Labour Force Survey covered 4.1 thousand households, in which 7.5 thousand people aged 15–74 were interviewed.


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