The number of people receiving unemployment benefits in Spain during the month of June has dropped for the second straight month, with 55,250 less according to the government’s latest figures released Thursday by the INEM.

The total number of people (officially) out of work in Spain was at 3,564,889 in June according to the Ministry of Labor. The official unemployment rate however fails to recognize those employees affected by the ERE employment suspension plan leaving thousands without full time work. The latest figures are also affected by the seasonal fluctuation, with Spain’s high tourism season beginning many people get hired for 2-3 during the summer.

Spain’s unemployment rate, last published in March, stood at 17.4 per cent, with the EU’s Eurostat agency placing the figure at 18.1 per cent.

It was the first time in two years that there have been two straight monthly declines.

Maravillas Rojo, secretary general at the ministry, said the June figures were good news but not enough to indicate a turnaround.

“However, in the next few months we can expect a better performance in employment than over the past year,” she said in a statement.

Spain’s unemployment rate soared by 50 per cent over the past 12 months, with the country suffering the worst recession in over 50 years.

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