German jobless rate grows for first time in 3 years

German unemployment in October turned out to be twice as high as analysts had predicted, with the jobless rate growing for the first time since 2009, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.

The Associated Press characterized the rate as “stable,” unchanged from the previous month in raw terms. But both AP and Bloomberg reported a seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 6.9 percent, meaning the number of people without jobs had risen by 20,000 over September.

“As the year-end approaches, it will become more difficult for Germany to remain untouched by Europe’s recession,” Frank Weise, the chief of Germany’s Federal Labor Agency, said, according to the Economic Times.

“But overall the labor market remains robust and in good shape,” Weise said, according to Bloomberg.

But the wider economy of the euro zone is still very much in crisis. Spain’s GDP was reported to have contracted in October, while euro zone finance ministers are in talks this week about how to aid the “faltering” economy in Greece,The New York Times reported.

In a meeting with German officials today, French finance minister Pierre Moscovici called for euro zone countries to being pooling their short-term debt, Reuters reported.

“We are not talking any more about Eurobonds. I know it is a red line here in Germany, for some, the present government among them. What I mean is that we need to address together the debt issue, and this must be backed by all 17 members of the euro zone, in order to pool some short-term sovereign funding instruments to build a first step towards some kind of mutualisation of the debt,” Moscovici said, according to Reuters.

France floated the idea of “Eurobonds” earlier this year, but Germany has continuously resisted the idea that they should underwrite the bonds of other countries, according to the Guardian. But the proposal is similar to the one France made Tuesday in that both are about collectivizing the debt burden faced by the 17 euro zone countries.

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