Spanish unemployment total rises to 4.75 million


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The Independent Online

Spain's unemployment benefit claimant total rose by nearly 39,000 last month to more than 4.75 million.

March's increase in the number of people filing for unemployment benefits, reported today, was the eighth straight monthly increase. The total number filing for benefits is up nearly 10% on a year ago.

The overall unemployment rate is released separately and quarterly. It stood at 22.9% at the end of last year, with nearly 5.3 million jobless.

This is higher than the benefits number because some unemployed people's unemployment aid has run out.

Spain's economy is shrinking and the government is forecasting a 1.7% contraction this year.