Greece’s jobless rate drops to 24.6 percent in second quarter

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Greece’s jobless rate fell to 24.6 percent in the second quarter from 26.6 percent in the first three months of the year, data from the country’s statistics service showed on Thursday.

The highest rate had been 27.8 percent in the first quarter of 2014. About 71.4 percent of Greece’s 1.16 million jobless are long-term unemployed, meaning they have been out of work for at least 12 months, the figures showed.

Athens has already published monthly unemployment figures through June, which differ from quarterly data because they are based on different samples. Quarterly figures are not seasonally adjusted.

The debt crisis and austerity imposed by the EU/IMF lenders in exchange for a bailout wiped out about a quarter of the economy, driving the jobless rate to record highs.

Greece’s economy expanded by 0.9 percent in the second quarter, helped by consumer spending and net exports. But it is seen sliding back into recession in the second half of the year.

KATHIMERINI

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