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Swiss unemployment above northern european average

© Miklmakmagnitka |

Switzerland is often assumed to have low unemployment. However, there are many countries in Europe with lower rates.

There are several ways to measure unemployment. The official measure in Switzerland is focused on those officially registered as unemployed still collecting unemployment benefits, a measure that delivers a lower figure than the one calculated by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), which includes all those looking for work

Switzerland’s official unemployment rate was 2.6% in 2018. However, the ILO rate for Switzerland was 4.9%.

The overall rate for northern Europe, which includes the UK, Sweden, Norway, Ireland, Finland, Denmark and Iceland, was 4.7%, slightly below the Swiss rate of 4.9%.

A fairly long list of european countries like Germany (3.4%), Austria (4.8%), Poland (3.7%), Netherlands (3.9%), Norway (3.9%), the UK (4.0%) and the Czech Republic (2.4%), all had lower unemployment than Switzerland based on the ILO definition.

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