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August 31, 2018

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Germany’s record low jobless rate stays

Joblessness in Germany held firm at record lows in August, official data showed yesterday, as a robust economy kept companies hiring in Europe’s powerhouse.

Just 5.2 percent of workers were unemployed this month, according to seasonally-adjusted figures from the Federal Labour Agency (BA), matching analysts’ expectations. The unemployment rate has not changed since May, remaining at the lowest level since 1990.

“The labor market continues to develop favorably,” said BA chief Detlef Scheele.

In unadjusted terms, less indicative of underlying trends but more prominent in public debate, the joblessness rate added by 0.1 percent to 5.2 percent, amounting to 2.35 million people out of work.

The jobless count typically increases in August as students graduate and register as jobseekers, and companies hold off hiring new staff until after the summer holidays.

The German economy, powered by booming domestic demand and a healthy appetite for its goods abroad, is expected to continue its strong run in the coming months, keeping unemployment in check.

The Ifo business confidence index this week hit its highest level since February, as the United States and the European Union backed off an escalating trade dispute sparked by President Donald Trump’s “America First” policy.


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