German unemployment falls to new post-reunification low

Frankfurt (AFP) –


German unemployment fell to a new historic low in January as the recovery in Europe's biggest economy remains on track, data showed on Tuesday.

Unemployment stands at the lowest level since west and east Germany reunited in 1990 after the fall of the Berlin Wall the previous year, the Federal Labour Office said in a statement.

The German 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.

That was more than expected, as analysts had been pencilling in a decline of around 6,500.

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.

But that increase was solely due to seasonal factors, the office said.

"The German economy expanded by 1.7 percent all in all in 2015. That was primarily due to dynamic domestic consumption," the labour office said.

"The trend is set to continue in 2016. The labour market is developing positively," it added.