Spain has said the number of people filing for unemployment benefits stood at a 15-year high at the end of 2011.
The Labour Ministry says the total is now 4.42 million. December saw the fifth straight monthly rise. The increase was small though, at only 1,897 people, or less than 0.1 %.
However, for the year as a whole the number of people receiving benefits rose by nearly 8% compared with 2010.
Spain's new conservative government is promising labour market reforms soon to boost employment. The overall jobless rate is released separately and quarterly, and officially stands at a eurozone high of 21.5%.