French Jobless Numbers Conceal Size of Shock to Labor Market

French Jobless Numbers Conceal Size of Shock to Labor Market

The plunge in French unemployment to 7.1% -- the lowest rate since 1983 -- conceals the start of what is set to be a prolonged labor market crisis in the euro area’s second largest economy. A measure of people who wish to work but are not counted as unemployed because they were unable to look for a job in confinement -- the so-called halo around unemployment -- rose to a record of more than 2.5 million. Major French employers including Renault SA and Airbus SE have already announced plans to cut jobs and the country’s central bank forecasts unemployment to rise sharply through the next year and peak at a record high of 11.8%

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