* Quarterly rate highest since second quarter of 2010
* Argentina's economic growth has slowed sharply this year
BUENOS AIRES Nov 19 Argentina's unemployment
rate rose to 7.6 percent in the third quarter from
7.2 percent in the same period of 2011, the government's
statistics agency said on Monday.
Unemployment in Latin America's No. 3 economy, where growth
has slowed sharply, was 7.2 percent in the second quarter of
2012 as well.
Monday's result is the highest since the second quarter of
2010 when unemployment was 7.9 percent.
A long boom period in Argentina has petered out this year
due to sluggish global demand, high inflation, a poor grains
harvest and the impact of government import and currency
controls on investment.
Gross domestic product showed zero growth in the second
quarter and posted its weakest year-on-year performance since
the third quarter of 2009, when the world was gripped by
The economy grew just 0.1 percent year-on-year in September
and fell far short of market expectations,
government data showed last week.
However, some economists say the economy may have bottomed
out and could show signs of mild recovery in the coming months.
"Activity touched bottom during the second quarter of 2012
and we expect it to firm very gradually throughout the remainder
of the year on the back of added fiscal and monetary policy
stimulus and the expected recovery of activity in Brazil,"
Goldman Sachs analyst Alberto Ramos wrote in a briefing note on