In late September, the national statistics bureau Istat reported that Italy's unemployment rate rose to 7.4 percent in the second quarter of 2009, its highest level since 2005. Italy's less developed southern regions recorded the highest rate of unemployment, representing 71 percent of the 378,000 total job losses recorded so far in 2009. Unemployment in the south is now at 12 percent, compared to 6.7 percent in central Italy and 5 percent in the industrialized north. However, experts predict more layoffs for Italy. According to the OECD's Employment Outlook 2009, while there has been a significant increase in unemployment in other countries, but ‘for countries such as Italy, Germany and France, the rise in unemployment is still to come.'
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