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Italy: Unemployment rises, 1/3 of youth without work

last update: October 31, 13:43

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Rome, 31 Oct. (AKI) - Italian unemployment rose slightly in September as uncertainly about prospects in the eurozone's third-largest economy discouraged hiring by companies. Difficulty in finding work was particularly pronounced for the country's youth.

The jobless rate rose to 8.3 percent in September from 8 percent in August. Unemployment rate among youth - defined as people between 15 and 24 years of age - increased 1.3 percentage point to 29.3 percent, according to preliminary data published Monday by national statistics agency Istat.

Separately, unemployment for the 17 countries that use the euro currency rose to 10.2 percent in September from 10.1 in August, according to a report released Monday by European Union’s statistics office in Luxembourg. Joblessness for the 27 members of the EU was 9.7 percent last month.

The value of Italy's economic output rose 0.3 percent in the second quarter from the three months through March, when it increased 0.1 percent. The slow growth prompted the three major ratings agencies to downgrade Italy's ability to pay off its 1.9 trillion debt.

The number of unemployed totalled 2.08 million in September, 3.8 percent higher than in August and 3.5 percent more than the same month in 2010, Istat said.

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