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German unemployment hits lowest level in 20 years

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by Kay Mitchell

Official data has revealed unemployment in Germany dropped to its lowest level in more than 20 years in September.

The country’s unemployment rate fell from August’s rate of 7% to 6.6%.

Unemployment now stands at 2.79 million – the first time since 1992 that the jobless total has been below 2.8 million.

It was also much better than economists had expected.

The country’s unemployment rate continues to fall and its job market has performed much better than in many other countries and many believe it is the result of the “Kurzarbeit” scheme, introduced by the German Government, designed to prevent mass redundancies.

Last year, Germany’s unemployment rate plunged to 7.7% from 8.2% in 2009 as a result of the Government initiative.

Many economists believe that Germany’s economic recovery appears to have enough “domestic stamina” to prevent a recession.”

However, despite the strong data, the economy, which is the euro zone’s largest, continues to suffer amid the ongoing debt crisis.

Germany, which has been regarded as Europe’s powerhouse, has been driving the recovery of the euro zone but a recent slew of weak data has forced many to re-evaluate its assessment of the economy.

Statistics office Destatis recently revealed German exports fell more than expected in July.

According to Destatis, exports fell by 1.8% in July on a monthly basis compared with a 1.2% drop in June. Economists had forecast a 0.1% fall for the month.

The sharp fall in exports will be of grave concern for the country’s Government. Export demand helped to bring Germany out of recession in the second quarter of 2009 – much sooner than many of its counterparts throughout the world.

The Washington-based International Monetary Fund recently lowered its growth forecasts for both Germany and the euro zone this year and next.

It expects Germany’s economy to grow 2.7% this year and 1.3% in 2012.

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News posted: September 30, 2011

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