- All you need to know about the unemployment benefits you can claim in France
- French economy gets boost as budget deficit sinks to 12-year low
The rate fell to 8.7 percent in the first quarter of the year, down by 0.1 percent from the same period in 2018, and the lowest level since 2009, INSEE said.
Macron, a pro-business centrist, has made cutting unemployment his main domestic priority and it has fallen gradually — but unspectacularly — since he took office in May 2017 when it stood at 9.4 percent.
France has suffered from chronic high unemployment for decades and the jobless rate is still far higher than in Germany and Britain, Europe's other two major economies.
British unemployment is at a 45-year low of 3.8 percent despite the economic turmoil created by Brexit.
Back in March, The Local reported that France's budget deficit had fallen to a 12-year low of 2.5 percent in 2018, a greater-than-expected decline achieved despite falling growth and purchasing power.
The deficit was lower than the government's forecast of 2.6 percent, and came as Insee revised upwards the shortfall between spending and revenue for 2017 to 2.8 percent of GDP, from a previous estimate of 2.6 percent.