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Unemployment up in Spain as economy sheds 203,000 jobs in August

While last month is traditionally a bad one for the labor market, destruction of employment is higher than that seen in other years

An unemployment office in Madrid.
An unemployment office in Madrid. EFE

August is traditionally a slow month for the Spanish labor market, as many summer jobs get axed in the hospitality and retail sectors. But this year has been worse than others, newly released figures show.

Unemployment rose by 47,047 people from July, the biggest rise on record for a month of August since 2011. The official number of people without a job is now 3.18 million: 1.3 million men and 1.87 million women.

There were 1.6 million new job contracts signed, but only a fraction were for permanent positions

Job creation also experienced its worst month of August since 2008, with average Social Security affiliations reaching 18,839,814 after 202,996 jobs were cut.

In August, affiliations grew in health and hospitality, but fell in education, manufacturing and construction. Among the self-employed, there was a 0.55% drop in affiliations, down to 3,249,275.

Broken down by regions, Social Security affiliations grew in the Canary Islands, Asturias, Cantabria and in the North African cities of Ceuta and Melilla, located along the northern coast of Africa. The biggest drops were in Catalonia, Madrid, the Valencia region and Andalusia.

There were 1.6 million new job contracts signed in August, a 4.3% rise from the same month last year. But of these, only 153,921 were permanent contracts, representing 9.61% of the total. Although this is less than one out of 10, it is still a 33.4% rise from the same period last year. Of the permanent contracts signed last month, 92,963 were for full-time positions and 60,958 for part-time jobs. There were 1,448,574 fixed-term contracts signed.

English version by Susana Urra.

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