French jobless total hits 14-year high
PARIS Nov 27 (Reuters) - The number of people out of work in France jumped in October, hitting its highest over 14 years, piling pressure on President Francois Hollande's government to stem the tide of job losses.
Labour ministry data released on Tuesday showed the number of registered job seekers in mainland France rose by 45,400 in October to 3.103 million, taking the total to its highest level since April 1998.
Unemployment has been rising for 18 straight months in France. The labour ministry said there was a risk the figures could get worse and that measures taken so far had yet to produce results.
"This run of negative figures on employment only increases our determination to do something to reverse the trend between now and the end of next year," Labour Minister Michel Sapin said in a statement.
The Socialist government unveiled a package of measures at the start of the month, including tax rebates for companies, aimed at boosting France's industrial competitiveness and safeguarding jobs.
The labour ministry data is the most frequently reported domestic jobs indicator for France, although it is not prepared according to widely-used International Labour Organisation (ILO) standards nor expressed as a rate of the number of job seekers compared with the total work force.