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Unemployed jobseeker figures almost double in April

The employment ministry said the spike was due to layoffs caused by the coronavirus crisis.

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The overall employment rate was down in April, compared to one year previously. Image: Marja Väänänen / Yle

There were just over 433,000 unemployed jobseekers in Finland registered at the country's Employment and Economic Development Offices by the end of April, according to the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment.

That marks an increase of just over 203,000 from the previous year, and a spike of 124,000 from the previous month.

In a press release issued Wednesday, the ministry said the spike in unemployed jobseekers was particularly due to layoffs caused by restrictions caused by the coronavirus epidemic. The figures were published in the ministry's Employment Bulletin.

At the end of March, as the epidemic was causing havoc in the country, the ministry warned there was a risk that unemployment in Finland could explode.

Many lost jobs in Uusimaa

The number of out-of-work jobseekers in Uusimaa jumped by nearly 115 percent in April to 143,261 compared to the same month a year ago, according to the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment (ELY) for Uusimaa.

In April 2019 the southern region's jobless figure was 66,741. Uusimaa is the country's most populous area, with just under 1.7 million residents, and the region most affected by the coronavirus epidemic, accounting for around 85 percent of the country's confirmed coronavirus cases.

Nearly 60,000 of those currently out-of-work had been laid off, about 58,000 more than the same time last year, which represents a 3,400 percent increase.

Fewer new jobs advertised

The employment ministry also reported that the number of new vacancies also declined in April compared to the previous year by 18,700 for a total of just over 50,000 new job announcements.

Statistics Finland figures showed that the employment rate was 70.1 percent in April, or 1.1 percentage points less than the same month last year, according to the ministry.

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