The number of people unemployed in France rose again in January but at a slower pace than in the same month a year earlier, yet the total number of people seeking full-time employment now heads for the five-million level, according to data released Wednesday.
The Labour Ministry said that another 8,900 people joined the ranks of the unemployed in January, a rise of 0.3 percent, which brings the official figure for full-time unemployed to over 3.3 million. At the same time, those seeking full-time employment now number a record 4.9 million in metropolitan France. France does not count the partially unemployed on its main jobless roll, which explains the difference between the two figures.
President Francois Hollande vowed in 2013 to reverse the upward trend in unemployment by the end of that year but failed in that task and 11.1 percent of the workforces is still out of work, despite a very limited resumption of growth.
France says the economy should grow by at least 0.8 percent in 2014, but economists say this is not enough to put dent in unemployment and growth of at least 1.5 percent per year will be needed to reverse the jobless trend.