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of people holding down jobs in the euro zone fell to its lowest level in nearly
seven years in the final three months of 2012, official figures showed
Thursday, a stark illustration of the economic and social price of the bloc's
Employment in the 17 countries that use the euro fell 0.3% in the fourth quarter from the third, to 145.7 million in seasonally adjusted terms, the European Union's statistics agency Eurostat said.
That is the lowest number since the first quarter of 2006.
employment peaked at 150.4 million in the first quarter of 2008, Eurostat said,
a few months before the financial crisis reached its worst point with the
The fourth-quarter figures compare with an employment total of 146.8 million in the corresponding period of 2011, meaning more than a million people in the currency bloc have lost their job in the past year.
numbers of jobless people have raised the pressure on euro-zone leaders seeking
to cut borrowing levels in a bid to end the fiscal crisis. Elections in
figures showed employment fell sharply in the highly indebted countries most
deeply affected by the crisis. The number of people with jobs fell 2%
contrast, employment rose 0.1% in
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