French Jobless Claims Rise to Record, Defying Hollande Recovery

French jobless claims rose for a third month, underscoring the inability of the country’s nascent economic recovery to generate employment so far.

The number of people actively looking for work in France grew by 26,200, or 0.7 percent, to 3.54 million in April, the Labor Ministry said Monday.

The increase is the largest in eight months and brings joblessness to a fresh high, adding pressure on President Francois Hollande’s government to find ways of generating jobs at a time when France’s economy is growing for the first time in three years. Gross domestic product expanded 0.6 percent in the first quarter, beating economists’ forecasts.

The recovery is there; it’s taking time for its effects to be felt, but it’s there,’’ Labor Minister Francois Rebsamen said at a news conference in Paris.

Markit Economics said on Monday that employment at factories fell in May at a “moderate” pace. While Markit’s manufacturing index rose to the highest in a year last month, it’s still below the 50 mark that divides contraction from expansion.

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