January sees Russian unemployment rate climb to 4 year high
The increase means that 6.1 million people or 8.1% of the workforce are now unemployed, the highest rate since March 2005, with the Economy Ministry now forecasting Russian GDP to contract by 2.2% in 2009.
Compounding the gloom is additional data indicating that the average wage experienced its biggest drop since August 1999, falling more than 9% on an annual basis to just over $418 per month, with disposable income falling 6.7%. The employment data comes as Industrial output fell 16% in January and Capital Investment dropped 15.5%.
President Medvedev has announced that the Russian Government will spend will spend more than $1.3 Billion to create new jobs, with significant additional funding to be made available for retraining programmes.