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Unemployment declined in July but remains above its pre-pandemic level, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

The unemployment rate within the OECD region dropped to 6.2% in July from 6.4% in June, as the number of people out of work fell by 1.6 million to 4.1 million, the group reported.

In Europe the jobless rate slipped from 7.8% to 7.6% month over month, while the decline was slightly stronger (0.3 percentage points) in Canada, the U.S. and Australia, it said.

Despite the improvement in labour markets, the OECD region’s unemployment rate remained 0.9 percentage points above its pre-pandemic level, the group said.

Additionally, it noted that the decline in the jobless rate since its peak in April 2020 largely reflects the return of workers who were temporarily laid off in response to the pandemic, particularly in the U.S. and Canada, which records these workers as unemployed.