In Europe joblessness has grown fastest in places such as Spain and Ireland, where building booms have crashed, but has only begun to edge up elsewhere. The unemployment rates in many European countries are below
America’s, but that may be because their more rigid labour markets adjust more slowly to falling demand. Given how fast European economies are shrinking, nobody doubts that worse lies ahead. By the end of 2010,
unemployment in much of the rich world is likely to be above 10%.
In the emerging world the pattern will be different, but the outcome more painful. As trade shrinks, millions of workers are losing their foothold on the bottom rungs of the global supply chain. Poverty will rise as they sink into
informal work or move back to the land. The World Bank expects some 53m people to fall below the level of extreme poverty this year.