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Germany – Employment reaches new high, driven by service sector

16 November 2012

Employment levels in Germany reached a new high in the third quarter of the year as 41.7 million people had a job in the period, a figure not seen since German unification over 20 years ago. This was mainly due to an increase in service sector employment.

The statistics office reports that employment, including self-employment, increased by +0.9% or 360,000 from a year ago although previous quarters this year had shown bigger increases above the +1% mark.

Compared with the second quarter of 2012, the number of people in employment rose by 39,000 (+0.1%) in seasonally adjusted terms.

In the third quarter, the service sector accounted for nearly three quarters of the year-on-year rise in employment. The largest gains were seen in public services, education, health (+118,000 people or +1.2%), followed by business services (+69,000 people or +1.3%).

In industry, the number of employed persons rose by 71,000 (+0.9%) on the previous year, while in construction this figure was up by 30,000 (+1.2%). In agriculture, forestry and fishing, employment dropped by 2,000 (-0.3%).

Year-on-year, the number of employees rose by 363,000 (+1.0%) to reach a total of 37.16 million. However, there were fewer self-employed people, a figure that dropped by 3,000 (-0.1%) to 4.54 million.  

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