RTTNews - Estonia's jobless rate stood at 11.4% in the first quarter, the biggest in the last eight years, the Statistics Estonia said Friday. The statistical office said the rapid growth in unemployment, which began in the second half of last year, continued into the first quarter of the current year. The number of unemployed persons increased to 79,000 in the first quarter, of which 47,000 or 59% were registered unemployed.

At the same time,the number of employed persons declined 6.8% year-on-year to 612,000. Compared to the fourth quarter, employment fell 6.2%. Meanwhile, the number of underemployed persons totaled 12,000 in the first quarter, which is three times higher than that in the same period of last year.

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