In the fourth quarter of 2019 there were 138.5 thousand unemployed persons, of whom 80.6 thousand (58.2%) men and 57.9 thousand (41.8%) women. The unemployment rate was 4.1%, 4.4% and 3.8% for men and women respectively. In comparison with the fourth quarter of 2018, the unemployment rate went down by 0.6 percentage points, registering the same decrease for men and women. Among all unemployed persons, 9.5% had attained tertiary education, 45.9% had completed upper secondary education and 44.6% had at most lower secondary education, the National Statistical Institute (NSI) said in a press release.

The unemployment rate by level of educational attainment was as follows: 1.3% for higher education, 3.3% for upper secondary, and 13.8% for education lower than upper secondary. In the fourth quarter of 2019 there were 73.6 thousand long-term unemployed persons (unemployed for one or more years), representing 53.1% of all unemployed persons. The long-term unemployment rate was 2.2%, 2.3% for men and 2.1% for women.

Of all unemployed people, 25.5 thousand (18.4%) were looking for their first job. In the fourth quarter of 2019, the unemployment rate for the age group 15 – 29 years was 6.7%, by 0.7 percentage points lower than in a year earlier. The unemployment rate (15 – 29 years) was 7.2% for men and 5.9% for women.