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Europe – Labour markets showing wide “cracks”

16 July 2012

The labour market in Germany is in far better shape than most other European Union member states, with Spain and Poland having very weak job markets, the latest labour market index by the Federation of European Employers shows.

The research reveals a huge gap in labour market performances across Europe, with Germany taking the lead and outperforming those of its closest rivals since January 2010. The index also shows some worrying developments. Apart from Germany, all reviewed labour markets performed worse when compared to a year ago. In May, labour market dynamics deteriorated substantially in Spain, Poland and the Netherlands, while corrosions were also evident in the UK.

Month-on-month, however, the UK was the only country to register an increase (+3.1%) in the index in May 2012. The largest decline was recorded in the Netherlands (-8.1%) followed by Germany, Spain and Poland, where the index decreased by -3.8%, -1.2% and -0.9%, respectively.

“The conception of the European Union as a Common Market is now well and truly dead. Cracks are opening up throughout the EU between eastern and western nations, big and small countries, the eurozone and EU countries outside it and well managed economies like Germany and badly managed economies like Spain and Poland,” warned Robin Chater, Secretary-General of The Federation of European Employers.

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