Out-of-work foreigners boost Swiss jobless rate

Out-of-work foreigners boost Swiss jobless rate
Photo: Canton of Vaud
The Swiss jobless rate increased in December to 3.4 percent from 3.2 percent the previous month as the percentage of foreigners out of work took another big jump, according to a government report issued on Friday.

The number of people registered for unemployment at regional job offices rose to 147,369, an increase of 10,817 from November, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (Seco) report said.

The share of foreigners on the jobless rolls jumped to 6.8 from 6.1 percent, while the rate for Swiss citizens edged up to 2.3 from 2.2 percent.

Non-Swiss accounted for 48 percent of registered unemployed in Switzerland last month.

The overall rate remained lower than the 3.5 percent recorded in December 2013.

Although there were variations through the year, the average jobless level for 2014 of 3.2 percent was virtually the same as in 2013, Seco said.

Government forecasters are predicting that after rising in the past six months unemployment is expected to drop again in 2015.

Last month, the official unemployment rate rose in all cantons except Graubünden, where it dipped to 1.9 from two percent.

In Zurich, Switzerland’s largest job market, the rate increased to 3.5 from 3.3 percent in November.

The lowest rate was recorded in the canton of Obwalden (1.1 percent, up from 0.9 percent), while the highest was in the canton of Valais (5.8 percent, up 1.6 percent).

For more information check Seco’s report here (available in French, German and Italian). 

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