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German unemployment keeps on falling

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The number of jobless people in Germany has dropped again as the nations economy remains in solid shape. With consumers in buoyant mood and firms reporting hefty order books, the trend is expected to continue.

The number of people without jobs in Europes largest economy fell by 25,000 in June, the Federal Labor Agency (BA) reported Friday.

The Nuremberg-based office said it registered 2.473 million unemployed people in the country in June, about 142,000 less compared to the same period last year.

BA officials noted the June figure was the lowest for this month since German reunification in 1990.

The countrys jobless rate declined 0.1 percent to 5.5 percent in the month under review, the employment agency announced.

But adjusted for seasonal effects, data released by BA shows the number of unemployed people in Germany surprisingly increased in June - by 7,000.

The number of jobless people declined further "due to seasonal reasons," said BA President Detlef Scheele. The rate of employment and demand for labor rose further during this period, he added.

Hiring robust

The number of people in employment has also been hovering at record levels. The figure stood at 44.1 million in May, Destatis, the federal statistics authority, said Friday. Its an increase of 651,000, or 1.5 percent, from a year ago.

Germanys economy has entered a virtuous circle in recent months, with higher consumer spending powering growth and encouraging companies to hire more workers, which in turn feeds into more spending.

A survey published Thursday by the Nuremberg-based GfK institute showed the mood among German consumers rose to its highest level in almost 16 years heading into July, supporting expectations that private consumption will contribute strongly to growth this year.

sri/bea (dpa, Reuters)
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