The jobless total rose by 18,000 in April to 469,000 or 4.6% of the working population, the national statistics office CBS said.
‘This is the first time in six years that unemployment has gone up so fast,’ CBS economist Michiel Vergeer told the NRC. ‘Until April, the jobless total was rising by some 5,000 a month on average.’
The small and medium-sized business sector expects to lose 175,000 jobs by the end of this year, the sector’s economic institute told the NRC.
Unemployment is forecast to reach 9% of the population by the end of 2010.
Men have been hardest hit so far because the crisis is currently being felt in exports and heavier industry, where more men work, Vergeer said.
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