German unemployment hits new low, despite refugee influx

FRANKFURT: German unemployment fell to a new historic low in January, despite a massive influx of refugees, as the recovery in Europe’s biggest economy remains on track, data showed on Tuesday.

The unemployment rate — which measures the jobless total against the working population as a whole — eased to 6.2 percent in January from 6.3 percent in December.

In numerical terms, the number of people registered as unemployed in Germany declined by a seasonally-adjusted 20,000 to 2.732 million, the Federal Labour Office said in a statement.

That was more than expected, as analysts had been pencilling in a decline of around 6,500. With the new drop, unemployment now stands at the lowest level since West and East Germany reunited in 1990 after the fall of the Berlin Wall the previous year.

By contrast, in raw, or unadjusted, terms, the jobless total increased by 239,000 to 2.92 million and the unemployment rate jumped to 6.7 percent in January from 6.1 percent in December, the office noted.


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