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German unemployment hits 24-year low

The number of jobless people in Germany has dropped to levels not seen since the early 1990s. While 2015 saw another decrease in unemployment overall, the rate was slightly up in December, the labor office reported.

Germany's Federal Labor Office (BA) said Tuesday the number of unemployed people in the country throughout 2015 hit the lowest level in 24 years.

It recorded an average of 2.795 million jobless people for last year. That's 104.000 fewer than in the previous year.

A better result was last achieved in 1991 - a year after German reunification – when there were only 2.6 million people without work.

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BA officials added, though, that there was a slight rise in unemployment in December of last year, with an additional 48,000 people added in month-on-month comparison, driving up the jobless rate by just 0.1 percent to 6.1 percent in the final month of the year.

"The good development of the labor market did not really experience a dent towards the end of last year," BA President Frank-Jürgen Weise said in a statement. "The slight December increase in unemployment is solely due to seasonal factors," he said while referring to traditionally lower job opportunities in some sectors of the economy during the winter months.

Labor market experts warned the number of jobless people might increase in the course of 2016 as more and more

refugees were expected to look for jobs.

hg/jil (Reuters, dpa)

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