Spanish jobless queue grows in October
An extra 134,000 people became unemployed in Spain in October taking the total to a record 4.36 million, official data showed on Thursday, in a country suffering from a jobless rate of 21.52 percent.
The figures, albeit based on different calculations, add to severe strains on the Socialist government before elections on November 20.
The jobless queue surged by 3.17 percent in October from the September level, the Labour Ministry said.
It was the highest jobless total recorded in the Labour Ministry's calculations, pointing to a grim final quarter of 2011.
But data released last week by by the National Statistics Insitute, which uses a different method of calculation, showed unemployment at even higher levels in the third quarter.
According to the National Statistic Institute, the unemployment queue grew to 4.978 million people in the third quarter from 4.834 million in the second quarter.
It showed Spain's unemployed rate soared to a 15-year high of 21.52 percent in the third quarter, up from 20.89 percent in the second quarter. Among 16-24 year olds, the rate in the third quarter was 45.8 percent.
The figures make gloomy reading for the Socialist government, which must face voters' ire in barely more than two weeks.
Campaigning officially opens Friday and polls show the opposition conservative Popular Party with a commanding lead.
The government had been predicting a jobless rate of 19.8 percent by the end of the year, a target which now seems all but unreachable.
© 2011 AFP