France’s unemployment rate declined in the first quarter to the lowest since 2009, figures from the statistical office Insee showed Thursday.

The average ILO jobless rate fell to 8.7 percent from 8.8 percent in the fourth quarter of 2018. This was the lowest level since 2009.

In metropolitan France, the unemployment rate dropped slightly to 8.4 percent in the first quarter from 8.5 percent a quarter ago. The number of unemployed decreased 19,000 over a quarter to 2.4 million.

Meanwhile, the youth jobless rate in metropolitan France climbed to 19.2 percent from 18.8 percent in the fourth quarter.

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