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German unemployment sinks as labor market remains strong

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends the weekly cabinet meeting of the German government at the chancellery in Berlin, Wednesday, May 31, 2017. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s labor market remained strong in May, with the unemployment rate falling again over the previous month to a new post-reunification low, in a likely boost to Chancellor Angela Merkel ahead of September’s election.

The Federal Labor Agency said Wednesday the unemployment rate fell to 5.7 percent from 5.8 percent in April in figures adjusted for seasonal variations. In unadjusted terms, the rate fell to 5.6 percent with nearly 71,000 fewer people registered as jobless.

IHS Markit economist Timo Klein said there has been a downward trend in unemployment since 2009, and the labor force has received a boost from rising migration from other European countries as well as refugees from the Mideast.

Klein said that, “Overall, labor market conditions remain remarkably healthy in Germany.”

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