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Eurozone December unemployment steady at 12.0%

ECB gives thumbs up to woman on executive board/AFP

ECB gives thumbs up to woman on executive board/AFP

BRUSSELS, January 31- The eurozone unemployment rate stayed near record highs at 12.0 percent in December but unchanged from a revised November figure, as the fragile recovery produced few new jobs, official data showed on Friday.

There were about 19.10 million jobless in the eurozone in December, down 129,000 from November 2013 but up 130,000 from December 2012 when the debt crisis was at its peak, the Eurostat statistics agency said.

The agency said the figure for November had been revised down from 12.1 percent to 12.0 percent.

Eurozone unemployment hit a record 12.1 percent in September but was stable for the whole of the final quarter of 2013.

Unemployment for the 28-member European Union as a whole was down slightly in December at 10.7 percent, compared with 10.8 percent.

The number of jobless across the EU was 26.2 million, which was 162,000 less than the previous month.

Unemployment rates are a lagging indicator tending to go up or down some time after the economic situation has turned down or improved.

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