RTTNews - Sweden's unemployment rate increased in July from the corresponding period of the previous year, Statistics Sweden announced Thursday.

The total number of unemployed persons in July amounted to 398,000 or 7.9% of the labor force, an increase from the 5.8% rate witnessed in the previous year. Economists had expected a rate of 8.2%.

Meanwhile, the employment rate decreased by 2.9 percentage points from last year to 66.8% in July. The total number of employed persons amounted to 4,646,000. Of this, a total of 635,000 persons were employed within the manufacturing, mining & quarrying, energy and environment sectors.

Statistics Sweden also revealed that the number of hours worked amounted to 80.7 million a week on average, a 6.7% decrease from the year-ago period.

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