The overall jobless rate in Greece has risen slightly in December to a record high 21 per cent. In November the rate was 20.9. New austerity measures when introduced will no doubt drive these figures even higher.
Even as stock markets react positively to news of a Greek debt deal the reserve army of the unemployed in Greece is growing by leaps and bounds. No doubt investors see this as positive since labor costs will fall. As the positive spinners will have it, Greece is becoming more competitive.
Youth between 15 and 24 suffered the worst with their unemployment now at 51.1 per cent. Budget cuts required for Greece to get a bail-out loan from the EU and IMF have resulted in many corporate closures and bankruptcies adding to the rolls of the unemployed.
Since 2008 the Greek economy has shrunk by about twenty per cent. About 600,000 jobs have been lost almost one in ten that existed before the recession.
Nicos Magginas from the National Bank of Greece said: "Despite some emergency government measures to boost employment in early 2012, it is hard to see how the upward unemployment trend can be stabilized in the first half of the year," For more see this Reuters article.