In October there was a decrease in French unemployment figures for the sixth consecutive month, plus a drop of over one per cent in the 800,000 long-term unemployed, something that happens rarely. Nevertheless unemployment is still running at 9.8 per cent of the workforce which is one of the highest in western Europe The number of unemployed in France currently stands at 2,379,800.

Paradoxically, official figures show that the percentage of new salaried workers is decreasing every month, but this is because many of the unemployed are accepting the new apprenticeship and assisted contracts which are designed for those working in the service sector, mainly as domestic carers.

The drop in the total unemployment figures can also be explained by the number of people working on a temporary basis in the construction industry.