Italian Unemployment Held at 10.7% in August on Recession

Italy’s jobless rate remained above 10 percent in August for a seventh month as employers remain reluctant to hire amid a deepening recession.

The unemployment rate held at a seasonally-adjusted 10.7 percent, Rome-based national statistics office Istat said in a preliminary report today. Economists forecast an increase to 10.8 percent in August, the median of nine estimates in a Bloomberg News survey showed.

Italy’s economy contracted for a fourth straight quarter in the three months through June as Prime Minister Mario Monti’s policies contributed to deepening the fourth recession since 2001. The government last month revised its 2012 growth forecast to a contraction of 2.4 percent, double its previous estimate.

The young have been particularly hard hit, with joblessness among people aged 15 to 24 at 34.5 percent in August, Istat said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Chiara Vasarri in Rome at cvasarri@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jerrold Colten at jcolten@bloomberg.net

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