The rate of unemployment in Switzerland rose to 4.4 per cent in December - its highest level since 1998.
The number of jobless went up by 8,790 from November’s figure to a total of 172,740. In contrast, in the same period last year the number dropped by 2,112.
Over the entire year the number of unemployed in Switzerland rose by 45.5 per cent, according to the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (Seco).
The number of 15 to 24-year-old jobless grew by 1.1 per cent in December and by 54 per cent over the entire year to make up 10,049 people.
Seco said the figures showed that the global financial crisis had significantly affected the Swiss labour market.
swissinfo.ch and agencies