The number of Spaniards registered as jobless fell by 0.3% in February from a month earlier, or by 13,538 people. 

This left 4.51 million people out of work, data from the Labour Ministry showed today. 

Joblessness fell most markedly in the Spanish construction sector, down 1.89%, or by 10,091 people. 

In the country's service sector, 223 fewer people were out of work, while unemployment fell by 6,535 people in industry, the figures showed. 

The fall in joblessness in February was the sharpest registered in that month since 2001, the ministry said. 

Spanish jobless figures rose in January for the first time since October marking the end of the busy Christmas season. 

Today's figures show that the number of jobless was down by 300,333 people, or 6.24% in February from a year earlier. 

The total number of people paying in to Spain's social security system rose to 16.72 million by the end of February, up 96,909 people (0.58%) from a month earlier.