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Spanish unemployment edged down in March

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April 2, 2013 03:27 AM EST | AP


MADRID — Spanish government figures show that the number of people registered as unemployed edged down by a little under 5,000 in March, the first reduction for the month in five years.

The Labor Ministry said Tuesday that the decline showed the government's policies are working. The scale of the task remains huge though as the number registered as unemployed stands at 5.04 million.

Spain is battling to emerge from its second recession in just over three years.

Among its problems, the Spanish economy is trying to recover from the collapse of the once-booming real estate sector, which has partly contributed to an unemployment rate of around 26 percent.