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Unemployment rate rises to 12.3% in December


The registered unemployment rate stood at 12.3% in December, the Central Statistical Office (GUS) reported. This was 0.6 p.p. higher than the month before and 0.2 p.p. more than a year earlier.

In the analysed period, over 1.95 million Poles were registered as unemployed, an increase of 96,400 in relation to one month earlier and up by 62,000 compared with December 2009. The highest unemployment rates were noted in the voivodships of Warminsko-Mazurskie (20%), Zachodniopomorskie (17.4%), Kujawsko-Pomorskie (16.6%), Podkarpackie (15.8%) and Lubuskie (15.6%). The lowest rates were recorded in Wielkopolskie (9.2%), Mazowieckie (9.4%), and Slaskie (9.9%).

Meanwhile, GUS data showed a decline in the scale of redundancy plans reported by employers to labour offices compared with November, but an increase in yearly terms. Thus, at the end of December 315 companies were declaring an intention to cut 43,200 jobs (including 29,800 in the public sector). This compares to 445 firms and 46,900 jobs (30,600 in the public sector) in November, and 338 companies and 35,000 jobs (13,700 in the public sector) in December 2009.

The number of job offers submitted to labour offices in December, at 44,800, was 26.9% lower than the month before, but up by 8.2% compared a year earlier.

See also the news item 'Mass redundancies down by 50% in 2010'.

In our view, the rise in the registered unemployment rate recorded in December had a seasonal character, caused by last month's wintry weather and the resulting suspension of outdoor business activity. We expect this trend to continue for several more months, but the spring should see a rebound in labour demand and a decline in the registered unemployment rate. We forecast that at the end of 2011 the official jobless rate will amount to 10.9%.

Paweł Sionko

Senior Economist

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