In September the number of unemployed fell to 2.847 million. Nevertheless, it is still significantly higher than before the Cororna crisis. There is also good news from the retail sector.

The number of unemployed fell again in September.

Dhe number of unemployed in Germany fell by 108,000 in September compared to the previous month, regardless of the Corona crisis. It was 2.847 million and thus 613,000 higher than a year ago, as the Federal Employment Agency announced on Wednesday in Nuremberg. The unemployment rate in September was 6.2 percent.

The number of short-time workers continues to decline in the Corona crisis. In July, according to the Federal Employment Agency on Wednesday, 4.24 million people were paid short-time work benefits. According to the latest projections by the employment agency, there were still 4.6 million short-time workers in June. A month ago, the Federal Agency had assumed 5.36 million short-time workers for June. The previous high was reached in April with 5.95 million.

“The effects of the corona pandemic on the labor market are still clearly visible,” said Daniel Terzenbach, board member of the Federal Employment Agency. “But there are slight signs of improvement.”

The seasonal decline of 108,000 unemployed in September is slightly higher this year than in previous years. However, at 613,000, the level of unemployment is also significantly higher than a year ago. The demand for labor is currently stable at a low level, after practically collapsing during the suspension of contacts in the spring.

Internet and mail order business achieve strong sales growth

Germany’s retailers are also coming more and more out of the Corona lows. In August, sales rose by 3.7 percent (real) compared to the same month last year, adjusted for price increases, as the Federal Statistical Office announced on Wednesday. In nominal terms, there was a plus of 5.2 percent – although August 2019 even had one more sales day. From July to August 2020, there was more than three percent growth in both real and nominal terms.

Compared to February, the month before the outbreak of the corona pandemic in Germany, according to calculations by the Wiesbaden statisticians, retail sales were 5.8 percent higher in real terms in August. One possible explanation for the upward trend is the lowering of VAT. In order to cushion the economic consequences of the Corona crisis and to stimulate consumption, the federal government reduced the VAT rate for six months from July 1: from 19 to 16 percent and from 7 to 5 percent.

According to the Federal Office, the largest increase in sales compared to the same month last year, with real 23 percent and nominally 24.4 percent, was achieved by the Internet and mail order business, which the corona crisis had given a boost. Furniture, household appliances and building supplies are also in demand, with sales increasing by 8.1 percent in real terms in August. In contrast, the clothing and footwear trade, for example, has not yet returned to the previous year’s level. In this area, sales in August were 10.1 percent lower in real terms than a year earlier.