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People wait in line in front of a government-run employment office in Madrid January 23, 2014. Spain's already high unemployment rate inched up in the fourth quarter in a bleak reminder of the challenges the country faces as it seeks to cement a fragile economic recovery. Even though 8,400 fewer people were out of work in the October to December compared with the previous quarter, the unemployment rate rose to 26.03 percent of the workforce, which shrank by 73,400 people to 22.65 million.
People wait in line in front of a government-run employment office in Madrid January 23, 2014. Spain's already high unemployment rate inched up in the fourth quarter in a bleak reminder of the challenges the country faces as it seeks to cement a fragile economic recovery. Even though 8,400 fewer people were out of work in the October to December compared with the previous quarter, the unemployment rate rose to 26.03 percent of the workforce, which shrank by 73,400 people to 22.65 million.
(Andrea Comas/Reuters)

Spain staggers as it exits bailout program

Spain has become the second of five beleaguered euro zone members, after Ireland, to exit its bailout program and the onerous conditions attached to it. It’s yet another sign that the peripheral countries are slowly on the mend. But like its fellow dwellers on the bottom rungs of Europe’s economic ladder, the currency union’s fourth-largest economy is far from ready to contribute much to the region’s budding economic revival.