Norway’s July Jobless Rate Rises on Holiday Impact, NAV Says

Norway’s registered unemployment increased in July in line with analyst expectations as the total number of people without jobs remained steady and holidays sapped the number of applicants.

Unemployment, not adjusted for seasonal variations, rose to 2.8 percent from 2.5 percent in June, according to a report from Norway’s labor and welfare office today. The rate was seen at 2.8 percent according to the median estimate of five economists surveyed by Bloomberg. The data shows the number of unemployed workers as a percentage of applicants at the employment office.

“The increase is first and foremost a normal seasonal increase,” Kyrre Aamdal, a senior economist at DNB ASA, said in an e-mailed note to clients. While unemployment figures are in line with central bank expectations, employment growth remains weak, he said. “Put together with other figures showing a slower growth of the economy, there is still an opening for a rate cut in the fall.”

Norway’s central bank in June signaled an increased chance of an interest-rate reduction this year as inflation slows more than projected amid weakening economic growth in western Europe’s largest oil producer. Norway’s $740 billion sovereign wealth fund, the world’s biggest, has largely shielded the nation from the fallout of a shrinking economy in the euro area, where unemployment is at 12.1 percent.

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