The number of unemployed people in Spain dropped by 72,800 to 5.9 million in the third quarter, pushing the unemployment rate down by 0.28 percent to 25.98 percent, the government said in a report Thursday.

The drop in the number of jobless people in the third quarter, compared to the same period in recent years, was the sharpest since 2005, the National Statistics Institute said in its Labor Force Survey.

Employment rose by 39,500 to 16.82 million in the July-September period, marking the first rise in the third quarter of a year since 2010, with the labor force participation rate hitting 59.59 percent, the Labor Force Survey said.

The unemployment rate for men in the second quarter was 25.50 percent, while the jobless rate for women was 26.55 percent.

The youth unemployment rate - calculated for those younger than 25 - was 54.39 percent in the third quarter, down 1.75 percentage points.

The number of households with all members of the labor force unemployed fell by 13,400 in the July-September period, but it still stands at a high 1.8 million, the report said.

The Bank of Spain said in its latest economic bulletin Wednesday that the country climbed out of recession in the third quarter, growing 0.10 percent from the previous three-month period to end a streak of nine consecutive quarters of contraction. EFE