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French jobless rate rises to 3.3 mil. in December

PARIS--France on Monday said the number of registered jobless rose to a record 3.3 million in December, belying President Francois Hollande's pledge to reverse the trend by the end of last year.

The number of job-seekers rose by 10,200, the labor ministry said. If those holding part-time employment were taken into account the number of unemployed rose to 4.89 million, another record.

A slight fall in the number of unemployed for October had raised government hopes that France may have finally turned a corner in its years-long jobs crisis.

Hollande, a Socialist who is under fierce pressure to tackle unemployment and with polls showing his approval ratings the lowest of any president in modern French history, claimed in November he had met his electoral pledge to halt the rise in joblessness by the end of 2013.

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