Thursday, March 30, 2006

Danish unemployment reaches new low

(Unemployment seasonally adjusted, on a full time basis. Total and insured)

New figures released by the Danish national statistics show the lowest unemployment figures for many years. This has reignited fears that the Danish economy is overheating. In many parts of the labour market there is a shortage of labour, especially in construction, hospitals and health sector, industry, information technology and nursery staff for the elderly. There is fear among economists that the shortage of labour will start a wages-prices spiral that will endanger the "health" of an otherwise vigorous economy with balance of payments surplus and state budget surplus.

On the other hand up to a million Danes in the age group 15-64 receive some form of welfare payments. Apart from the unemployed it is people receiving disablement benefit, people on sick pay, people on pre-retirement pay, etc. Many of these people would not mind getting a job, if they could get one. Employers, however, look for "efficient" and flexible employess, - with the right kind of qualifications. So, in the present situation they look abroad for labour. But this perspective does not go well with the rampant xenophobia!!

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