Unemployment has now reached nearly 9%, according to figures from the Directorate of Labour.
By their estimates, 14,546 Icelanders – 8.9% of the population – are registered as unemployed or underemployed. This is also an increase of over 1,000 out of work within the past month. By comparison, at this time last year, unemployment was at 1%.
Unemployment is greatest in the southwest peninsula, Suðurnes, where it is measured at 14.3%. Not entirely a rural phenomenon, unemployment is actually lowest in the remote West Fjords, at 2.3% – well below the national average. In fact, unemployment seems to be increasing more in the capital area than in the countryside, as it increased by 12% within the past month in Reykjavík, yet only by 5.7% in rural areas.
More men than women are unemployed as well – 10.3% of men and 7.2% of women are without work.