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Greek Unemployment Hits 21.8 Percent

ATHENS, Greece (AP) â¿¿ Greece's unemployment rate increased to 21.8 percent in January, with nearly 350,000 people losing their jobs in the past year while the debt-strapped country's economy remains stuck in recession.

The Greek Statistical Authority said Thursday that 1,084,668 people were out of work in the first month of 2012 â¿¿ with 344,913 people losing their jobs since January 2011 â¿¿ nearly 1,000 per day.

Greece is suffering a fifth year of recession, largely due to harsh austerity measures demanded in return for international bailout loans required to avoid default.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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