German unemployment falls to 9.1 percent

31st May 2007, Comments 0 comments

31 May 2007, Berlin dpa) - German unemployment dropped to 9.1 per cent in May, data released Thursday showed, with this year's economic pickup continuing to help spur new hiring in the country. The Federal Labour Office said the numbers out of work in the politically important seasonally-unadjusted terms in Europe's biggest economy fell to 161,000 to 3.806 million this month. The jobless rate stood at 9.5 per cent in April and 9.8 per cent in March. "Unemployment has fallen again as employment growth conti

31 May 2007

Berlin dpa) - German unemployment dropped to 9.1 per cent in May, data released Thursday showed, with this year's economic pickup continuing to help spur new hiring in the country.

The Federal Labour Office said the numbers out of work in the politically important seasonally-unadjusted terms in Europe's biggest economy fell to 161,000 to 3.806 million this month.

The jobless rate stood at 9.5 per cent in April and 9.8 per cent in March.

"Unemployment has fallen again as employment growth continues and hiring remained on a high level," labour office chief Frank-Juergen Weise said while releasing the data.

His views were echoed by economists who saw the data as confirming the positive outlook for jobs in the coming months.

"The economic upswing underway this year and next year will help to reduce unemployment further," said Eckart Tuchtfeld, economist with Commerzbank AG.

The latest set of German unemployment data comes in the wake of a raft of key economic indicators underscoring the solid performance of the country's economy this year.

Economists have been revising up their 2007 growth forecasts for this year with many now expecting Germany to turn in an expansion rate similar to the 2.8 per cent rate it chalked up last year.

The economic pickup combined with Germany's strong growth rate is also helping to further exacerbate the shortages of skilled workers in the country.

The number of job vacancies in the country rose by 13.6 per cent in May compared to the same month in 2006, the labour office said. However, job vacancies slipped from 651,139 in April to 642,563 in May.

The seasonally unadjusted jobless rate stood at 10.9 per cent in May last year with the numbers out of work 732,000 fewer than 12 months ago.

This represents a monthly fall of 60,000 over the last year with economists pointing to the round of labour market reforms launched in recent years as having helped to boost employment.

In particular, this included the reforms introduced by the Social Democrat-led government of former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, which in part were aimed at placing pressure on the unemployed to seek out work.

However, in seasonally adjusted terms, which analysts say highlights labour market trends, unemployment rose by 3,000 to 3.855 million. The seasonally adjusted jobless rate stood at 9.2 per cent in May.

Economists had expected seasonally adjusted unemployment to fall by 20,000 this month. In seasonally adjusted terms, unemployment had dropped by 9,000 in April.

DPA

Subject: German news

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