THE number of unemployed in Spain reached a record high in December with 4.42 million registered as being out of work, according to labour ministry figures.
It follows the announcement that the Spanish deficit for 2011 could top eight per cent of GDP, significantly higher than the official target of six per cent.
The government has moved to plug the gap, slashing spending by 8.9 billion euros and introducing six billion euros of tax rises.
This comes despite promises from Prime Minister Rajoy, and means workers earning less than 17,700 will pay 0.75 per cent more tax, while the maximum seven per cent rise will go for people earning over 300,000 euros.
A plan to allow father’s to take up to a month’s paid paternity leave has been postponed.
While subsidies for trade unions and political parties will be cut by 84 million.