Spain’s unemployment hits record high

Spain’s unemployment rate soared to a new record of 27.2 per cent of the workforce in the first quarter of 2013, according to official figures.

The total number of unemployed people in Spain has reached more than six million, although the rate of the increase has slowed.

As Spain still struggles to emerge from an economic crisis which began five years ago, a big demonstration in Madrid is being planned against the austerity measures.

Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy will reveal fiscal and policy measures aimed at halting recession in the Eurozone’s fourth-largest economy on Friday.

The International Monetary Fund last week cut its 2013 forecast for Spain’s growth to a 1.6 per cent and said unemployment will peak at 27 per cent this year.

The jobless figure is the highest since 1976, when Spain began its transition to democracy after the death of dictator Francisco Franco.

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