In May 2011, Bulgaria registered its lowest monthly unemployment rate since November 2009, according to official data from the State Employment Agency.
Thus, formal figures indicated that in May 2011, Bulgaria's unemployment rate was 8.87%, which is 0.42 pp lower than in April, and the first time since October 2010 when the unemployment is below 9%. The previous lower monthly unemployment figure was recorded back in November 2009 when it was 8.66%.
A total of 328 533 persons were registered as unemployed by the State Employment Agency in May, 15 000 fewer than in April 2011. About 20 000 people started new jobs in May, the majority of those being hired in the processing industry, trade, and tourism.
11 out of the 28 Bulgarian districts have unemployment rates that are lower than the average: Sofia - 3.7%; Gabrovo - 5.8%; Burgas - 6.1%; Varna - 6.5%; Stara Zagora - 7.3%; Plovdiv - 7.9%; Ruse - 8.1%; Veliko Tarnovo - 8.3%; Dobrich - 8.3%; Pernik - 8.4%; Haskovo - 8.8%.
The other 17 districts are doing worse than the average, with Smolyan doing worst - 16.3%, followed by Montana - 15%; Targovishte - 14.6%, Shumen - 13.6%, Vidin - 13.5%, Vratsa - 13.4%, Razgrad - 12.6%, and Silistra - 12.5%. (Source: Sofia News Agency)