PARIS – France’s unemployment rate rose to 9.7% in the third quarter, 0.2 percentage points more than in the previous quarter, the French National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies (INSEE) said on Thursday.
Data reported for the whole of France, including the overseas departments apart from Mayotte, showed a year-on-year decrease of 0.3%.
Figures from INSEE showed some 4.2% of the workforce is long-term unemployed, 0.2 percentage points more than in the second quarter. People without work for more than 12 months are considered to be long-term unemployed.
President Emmanuel Macron has liberalized the labor market in the face of bitter opposition to try to reduce persistently high unemployment. He has promised to reduce the rate to 7% by the end of his term in office in 2022.
The unemployment rate in metropolitan France has come down from the peaks of 2014 and 2015 when it exceeded 10%, but continues to be higher than the pre-crisis levels.