IN SHORT BUSINESS

Unemployment rises again

Slovakia's unemployment rate increased rather sharply in December, drawing closer to the 16-percent level at the end of 2003, news wire TASR reported.

The unemployment rate went up 1.42 percentage points from that of November to stand at 15.61 percent at the end of December - the figure representing the 414,490 people immediately available for work.

The total number of unemployed (including people on retraining, sick leave, and maternity leave) was 453,282, up by 33,052, or 7.9 percent from that of the previous month.

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