German employment hits new annual record, but jobs boom falters | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 02.01.2014
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German employment hits new annual record, but jobs boom falters

In 2013, more Germans had jobs than ever before in the country’s post-war history. But after seven consecutive years of improving employment figures, the jobs boom has begun to decelerate.

Last year, an average of 41.8 million Germans out of a population of about 82 million was employed, according to figures released by the German Statistics Office, Destatis, on Thursday.

This figure meant that 232,000 more people had jobs than in the previous year, and that German employment had climbed for the seventh consecutive year in 2013, Destatis reported.

Compared with the years before, however, the pace of job creation slowed markedly. In 2011 and 2012, Europe's largest economy was able to create an average of 444,000 and 554,000 new jobs respectively.

Destatis data showed that the German services sector added more than two thirds of the new jobs with 227,000. Payroll enlargements in the manufacturing sector were up by about 17,000 jobs, while construction added some 20,000 jobs.

On the back of projected weak economic growth of just 0.5 percent in the final quarter of last year, analysts expect a slight increase in unemployment for December. The German jobless figure for the month, due to be published next week, was likely to rise by about 90,000 compared with November, the chief economists of major German banks announced Thursday.

Nevertheless, the slowdown may be only temporary, they said, as an upswing was expected for the German economy in 2014, which might accelerate the creation of new jobs again.

uhe/jlw (dpa, Reuters)

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