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Business Briefs

Unemployment to reach 11.1 percent in Germany for February, 34,500 companies declare bankruptcy, but a U.S. Congressman offers some good news for the German economy.


More people will be taking a number at their local employment offices.

German Unemployment Expected To Rise To 4.66 Million

The number of jobless in Germany, the biggest euro zone economy, increased by 40,000 in February, the newspaper Die Welt reported on Friday. Last month, the German jobless total surged to 4.66 million, equivalent to 11.1 percent of the working population, as labor markets reeled from a deepening economic slump and the lack of structural reform. Die Welt quoted experts stating that the economy, along with season factors contributed to a further increase in joblessness in February.

Nearly 34,500 German Went Bankrupt in 2002

More than 34,500 German companies filed for bankruptcy between January and November 2002, the Federal Statistics Office reported on Friday. The agency said the total number of corporate failures in 2002 could rise to 38,000, up from 32,200 the previous year. The current year could be even grimmer, with some forecasting as many as 42,000 insolvencies for 2003. Companies in the commercial, construction and services sectors have been hardest hit due to weak consumer demand and decreased investment levels.

Deutsche Bank Sells €1.5 Billion in Shareholdings

Deutsche Bank, Germany's largest private bank, said Friday it has agreed to sell large parts of its private equity portfolio for €1.502 billion ($1.6 billion). Deutsche Bank said in a statement that it's DB Capital Partners subsidiary had sold the portfolio of shares in unlisted companies -- including leisure complex operator Center Parcs, United Biscuits, packaging company Jefferson Smurfit -- to a management buyout team led by DB Capital Partners chief Ted Virtue and the unit's European managing partner, Graham Clempson.

Compiled with material from wire reports.