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26% Unemployment Rate is a Record High for Spain

Travelers Today       By    Katie McFadden

Updated: Jan 24, 2013 10:31 PM EST

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Think unemployment is a problem in America? Spain is dealing with a 26% unemployment rate. More than 5.9 million people are out of work in Spain.

The lowest unemployment rate in America was 25% during the Great Depression. Spain has topped that at 26.02%.

In the fourth quarter of 2012, Spain lost 363,000 jobs when the government implemented austerity measures. Those particularly affected include young people as 100,000 fewer people between the ages of 20 and 24 were employed, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Spain's unemployment rate is so high that it is double the rate for the rest of Europe. Many Spaniards have left the country to find jobs in other parts of Europe and the United States. According to the Los Angeles Times, 70% more people left Spain in 2011 than the year before.

Spain lost more than 850,000 jobs throughout 2012 and much of it was in the southern end of the country.

While 26% might seem bad, it may get even worse. According to The Wall Street Journal, unemployment is expected to grow due to bank closures, meaning more jobs will be lost.

"It is a very, very high figure," Soledad Pellon, market strategist at IG Markets in Madrid told MSN. "The expectation is that this figure will carry on growing during 2013. This year will still not be a year in which we will see job creation."

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