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Labour market

An overview

The European Strategy includes among its targets the increase of the employment rate especially among women and people aged over 50. In 2018 in Italy the employment rate for the population aged between 20 and 64 reached 63.0% (+0.7 percentage point compared to 2017) and summed up an extremely large gender imbalance. The employment rate of the aged 55-64 continued to grow, registering 1.5 points more than in 2017 and reached in 2018 53.7%.


The increase of the employment affected only employees with temporary contracts that increased from 15.4% in 2017 to 17.0% in 2018. At the same time, the share of part-time employees workers showed a slight decreasing trend.


The size of undeclared labour, though decreasing, was still quite large at national level (13.1% of people in employment in 2016), mainly in specific areas and production sectors.

The unemployment rate dropped by 0.6 points compared to 2017, at 10.6%. The decrease was more marked among the population aged between 15 and 24 (-2.5 points); the rate was still higher among women (34.8% compared to 30.4% of the male component). Less than six unemployed out of ten have looked for job for over one year, a slight increase compared to the previous year.


The non-participation rate, i.e. those who are available for but not seeking work, slowed down  for the fourth year in a row and was still higher for women (7 points more).