Unemployment Stabilizes in Industrialized Countries

The lowest unemployment rates were in South Korea at 3.4%, Austria 4.3% and the Netherlands 4.5%.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said on Oct. 12 that unemployment has stabilized in the world's main industrialized nations. It cited figures for August when the jobless rate fell to 8.5% from July's 8.6%.

The OECD said September figures for the United States, where the rate was unchanged from the August level of 9.6%, provided "further evidence" of labor market stability.

Nonetheless, the rate in the 33 OECD members remains close to post-World War II highs.

Spain had the highest jobless rate in August at 20.5%, followed by the Slovak Republic on 14.6%, Ireland 13.9%, Hungary 10.9% and Portugal 10.7%.

The lowest rates were in South Korea at 3.4%, Austria 4.3% and the Netherlands 4.5%.

The number of unemployed in the OECD countries came to 45.5 million in August, the group said, an increase of 13.4 million from July 2008.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010

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