Unemployment falls in Denmark for ninth consecutive month

Unemployment falls in Denmark for ninth consecutive month
File photo: NIELS AHLMANN OLESEN/Ritzau Scanpix
Denmark’s labour market appears to be in rude health, with employment numbers increasing over an extended period.

The number of unemployed fell in December by 700 to a total of 105,100, the ninth month in a row in which the figure has decreased, according to Statistics Denmark data.

Unemployment fell by a total of 8,300 in 2018. At 3.8 percent, the proportion of unemployment was unchanged in December relative to November.

Economist Signe Roed-Frederiksen of Arbejdernes Landsbank said the small reductions in unemployment were a positive trend, despite little sign that new jobs are being created.

“This reflects the fact that more people are joining the labour market. But there is much to suggest that employment will lose momentum during the (coming year),” Roed-Frederiksen said.

“A combination of less economic growth and fewer available hands for work will place a natural dampener on job growth,” she added in written comments to Ritzau.

In just over five years, around 200,000 people have gained employment, while unemployment has fallen by approximately 50,000, as the overall size of the work force has increased.

The Confederation of Danish Industry’s vice director Steen Nielsen stressed that companies in Denmark continue to find it difficult to fill vacant positions.

“In good times such as now, many companies are having trouble finding the employees they need,” Nielsen said.

“More employees are needed for companies, and if we ignore this challenge, we are risking an abrupt slow-down,” he added.

Unemployment in Denmark is at its lowest level since February 2009, just before the effects of the global financial crisis began to impact jobs.

READ ALSO: Danish bill to tighten residency requirement for unemployment insurance passed by narrow majority