STAFF REPORTER

PALMA
THE number of people out of work in the Balearics did fall last month, but there are still a record number of people out of work.
The start of the summer holiday season was expected to ease the rate of unemployment and last month, the number of people out of work fell by 2'629.
But, there were still 27'231 more unemployed at the end of last month than at the end of June in 2008.

NEW JOBS
The total number of people out of work at the end of June stood at 64'160.
Experts said yesterday that the number of unemployed is expected to drop again this month with most of the new jobs being found in the tourism and service sectors - but many will be short term contracts because of the late start to the summer holiday season.

However, the Balearic employment market is performing better than on mainland Spain.
Spain has the highest unemployment rate in the eurozone with a total 3'564'889 people out of work - 18.7 percent and nearly twice the 9.5% rate for the wider euro zone - and the number of people claiming unemployment benefit was 49 percent higher than in June last year. However, last month the number of people out work in Spain fell by just 1.53 percent, still much slower than here in the Balearics.

Nevertheless, the fall in unemployed for the second consecutive month does apparently point to an easing in the rapid pace of deterioration of the country's job market and economy. The on-month improvement in the figures was largely the result of temporary job creation at the beginning of Spain's summer tourism season and as a result of the government's eight billion euro infrastructure plan. According to seasonally adjusted data provided by the Ministry for Employment, June's jobless claims were virtually unchanged from May.

Speaking in an interview with Spain's state-owned National Radio, Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said the data showed that “the government's measures are having an impact.” “We already have some data showing second quarter (economic activity) was better than the first quarter,” Zapatero said.
Formerly one of the euro zone's chief engines of economic growth and job creation, Spain suffered an abrupt change of fortune last year when an escalation of the global financial crisis hastened a correction that was already underway in its once-buoyant home-building industry.

SLOWER
Spain's gross domestic product fell 1.9% in the first quarter from the fourth quarter, its largest fall on records dating back to 1970.
In a note to investors, BNP Paribas economist Dominic Bryant said he expects Spain to continue shedding jobs in the coming months, though at a slower pace than at the start of the year. “Because some adjustment has been made, the pressures have been reduced somewhat so the intensity will not be as great as has been seen thus far,” Bryant said yesterday.

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