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Italy's Unemployment Rate Unexpectedly Hits Record High 13.2%

• http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com-Mike S.

The unemployment rate rose to 13.2 percent from a revised 12.9 percent the previous month, the Rome-based national statistics office Istat said in a preliminary report today. That's the highest since the quarterly series began in 1977. The median estimate of seven economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for an unemployment rate of 12.6 percent in October.

The youth unemployment rate for those aged 15 to 24 rose to 43.3 percent last month from 42.7 percent in September, today's report showed.

Expectations vs. Reality

Economists expected a drop in unemployment of 0.3%. Instead unemployment rose 0.3%.

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi blamed the rise on an increase in the participation rate, with more people looking for a job.

Similar to the setup in the US, those who want a job but do not look for one are not considered unemployed. Instead, they are considered "discouraged workers".

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