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un- +‎ employment


  • IPA(key): /ʌn.ɪmˈplɔɪ.mənt/
  • (file)


unemployment (countable and uncountable, plural unemployments)

  1. The state of having no job; joblessness.
    Unemployment made Jack depressed.
    • 1944 May and June, R. H. W. Bruce, “The L.M.S.R. in Northern Ireland—I”, in Railway Magazine, page 147:
      In 1928, an arrangement was made between the Government of Northern Ireland and the N.C.C. for the construction of a loop line as an unemployment scheme.
  2. The phenomenon of joblessness in an economy.
    Unemployment has been considered a cause of crime.
  3. The level of joblessness in an economy, often measured as a percentage of the workforce.
    Unemployment was reported at 5.2% in May, up from 4.9% in April.
  4. (countable) A type of joblessness due to a particular economic mechanism.
    All unemployments, seasonal, frictional, cyclical, classical, whatever, mean that you're out of work.
  5. (countable) An instance or period of joblessness.
    Until then his life had consisted of low-paying jobs, numerous unemployments, and drug use.



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Further reading[edit]

  • "unemployment" in Raymond Williams, Keywords (revised), 1983, Fontana Press, page 325.