EU Unemployment Rates, April 2019

Jun 7, 2019
Unemployment Rate in EU States

The chart above shows the unemployment rate in each EU state as of April 2019 (unless otherwise noted - see caveats below), the change from the previous month, and the rate one year prior.  Czechia continues to be the only state with an unemployment rate below three percent even though its rate ticked up in April.


  • The difference between the state with the lowest unemployment rate, Czechia, and the state with the highest, Greece, is 16.3 percentage points (down from 16.6 last month and down from 18.3 last year).  Czechia and Greece had the lowest and highest rates respectively both last month and last year.
  • Greece has 8.76 times the unemployment rate that the Czech Republic does.  The ratio of highest rate to lowest rate was down from 9.30 last month and up from 8.96 last year.
  • The median unemployment rate in the 28 EU states is 5.40 (down from 5.45 the previous month and down from 5.95 last year) and the mean 6.01 (down from 6.10 the previous month and down from 6.75 last year).
  • Twelve states did not see a change in their unemployment rate from the previous month, 13 saw an improvement, and three states saw their rate increase.
  • Two states did not see a change in their unemployment rate from last year, 25 saw an improvement, and one state saw its rate increase.


  • Data is from April 2019 except for Estonia and Hungary which are from March 2019 and Greece and the United Kingdom which are from February 2019 (previous month and year rates also reflect the respective one and two month delay).
  • Data may conflict with previous month's report as statistical agencies make updates to the rates over the course of the month.
  • All figures are rounded to the nearest hundredth.


In absolute terms, Sweden had the greatest improvement over the previous month dropping 0.8 percentage points.  Portugal had the biggest spike in its rate rising 0.2 percentage points.  Year over year, Greece had the greatest improvement with a 2.2 percentage point drop while Denmark had the greatest deterioration with a 0.1 percentage point rise in the unemployment rate.

In relative terms, Sweden had the greatest improvement over the previous month with a 11.94% drop in its rate while Czechia had the biggest deterioration with a 5.00% rise in its rate.  Year over year, Estonia had the greatest improvement with a 31.67% drop in its rate while Denmark had the greatest deterioration with a 1.92% rise in its rate.

Seven EU states have an unemployment rate below four percent (down from eight last month, up from five last year) which traditionally has placed inflationary pressure on wages.  Seventeen have a rate between four and eight percent (up from 16 last month, same as 17 last year), and four have a rate above eight percent (same as last month, down from six last year).

Sweden bested two states (Portugal and Latvia) as it went from an unemployment rate of 6.7% in March to a rate of 5.9% in April.  Estonia overcame Slovenia.  Year-over-year, Estonia surpassed six states (Luxembourg, Denmark, Austria, Ireland, Bulgaria, and Slovenia) as its rate plummeted from 6.0% in April 2018 to 4.1% in April 2019.  Slovenia (Bulgaria, Austria, and Denmark) and Ireland (Austria, Denmark, and Luxembourg) each surpassed three states; the Netherlands (Hungary and Poland), Bulgaria (Austria and Denmark), and Slovakia (Lithuania and Sweden) each surpassed two; and Malta (Poland), Belgium (Lithuania), and Latvia (Portugal) each overcame one.  On the other hand, Austria (Estonia, Slovenia, Bulgaria, and Ireland) and Denmark (Estonia, Slovenia, Bulgaria, and Ireland) were each bested by four states; Poland (the Netherlands and Malta), Bulgaria (Estonia and Slovenia), Luxembourg (Estonia and Ireland), and Lithuania (Belgium and Slovakia) were bested by two; and Hungary (the Netherlands), Slovenia (Estonia), Ireland (Estonia), Sweden (Slovakia), and Portugal (Latvia) were each surpassed by one state.


StateLast YearPrevious RateLatest Rate
United Kingdom4.23.83.7


Eurostat.  2019.  "Unemployment by Sex and Age - Monthly Average."  Accessed June 6, 2019.,C,X,0;GEO,L,Y,0;S_ADJ,L,Z,0;AGE,L,Z,1;UNIT,L,Z,2;SEX,L,Z,3;INDICATORS,C,Z,4;&zSelection=DS-055624S_ADJ,SA;DS-055624UNIT,PC_ACT;DS-055624SEX,T;DS-055624AGE,TOTAL;DS-055624INDICATORS,OBS_FLAG;&rankName1=UNIT_1_2_-1_2&rankName2=AGE_1_2_-1_2&rankName3=INDICATORS_1_2_-1_2&rankName4=SEX_1_2_-1_2&rankName5=S-ADJ_1_2_-1_2&rankName6=TIME_1_0_0_0&rankName7=GEO_1_2_0_1&sortC=ASC_-1_FIRST&rStp=&cStp=&rDCh=&cDCh=&rDM=true&cDM=true&footnes=false&empty=false&wai=false&time_mode=NONE&time_most_recent=false&lang=EN&cfo=%23%23%23%2C%23%23%23.%23%23%23.

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