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43.7 million persons in employment in 3rd quarter of 2016

WIESBADEN – In the third quarter of 2016, the number of persons in employment whose place of employment was in Germany amounted to roughly 43.7 million according to provisional calculations of the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis). Compared with the third quarter of 2015, the number of persons in employment increased by 388,000 or 0.9%. Although employment increased year on year in the summer months, it did so at a slower pace than in the first two quarters of 2016. The year-on-year growth rates had been 1.3% in the first quarter and 1.2% in the second quarter. 

Compared with the second quarter of 2016, the number of persons in employment in the third quarter of 2016 rose by 171,000 (+0.4%). An increase in employment in the third quarter of a year is a usual seasonal pattern. However, in the third quarter of 2016 it was lower than the relevant average of the past five years (+262,000 people). After seasonal adjustment, that is, after the elimination of the usual seasonal fluctuations, the relevant number in the third quarter of 2016 increased by 23,000 (+0.1%) compared with the previous quarter. 

In the third quarter of 2016, the rise in the total number of persons in employment on the same quarter a year earlier was mainly due to the growth in the service sector. The largest absolute employment gains were recorded for public services, education, health (+197,000 people or +1.9%), followed by business services (+123,000 people or +2.1%) and trade, transport, accommodation and food services (+94,000 people or +0.9%). In construction, the number of persons in employment increased by 14,000 or +0.6%. In industry (excluding construction), it was down by 5,000 (–0.1%) and in agriculture, forestry and fishing by 18,000 (–2.8%) in the third quarter of 2016 compared with the same quarter a year earlier. 

Compared with the third quarter of 2015, the number of employees increased by 418,000 (+1.1%) to stand at 39.34 million in the third quarter of 2016. The increase is due to the rise in employment subject to social insurance. The number of self-employed including family workers was down by 30,000 (–0.7%) to 4.32 million in the third quarter of 2016 on the same quarter a year earlier.

According to first provisional results of the Institute for Employment Research of the Federal Employment Agency, the average number of hours worked per person in employment decreased by 0.4% to 346.6 hours in the third quarter of 2016, year on year. The total number of hours worked, that is, the number of persons in employment multiplied by the hours worked per person in employment, was up by 0.5% to 15.1 billion hours in the same period. 

In addition to calculating first results of the number of persons in employment and the number of hours worked for the third quarter of 2016, the results published so far for the first and second quarters of 2016 were updated. For this purpose, all additional sources of employment statistics that had become available by the time of updating were taken into account. The recalculation did not lead to any change in the year-on-year change rates of the quarterly employment figures for the first and second quarters of 2016 at the level of the overall economy. 

Persons in employment and hours worked
Quarter 1
Persons in employment 2Hours worked 3
employed 4
by persons in
person in
Persons in 1,000mn hourshours
1 For persons in employment: annual and/or quarterly averages.
2 Results of employment accounts as part of national accounts; persons in employment whose place of employment is in Germany (domestic concept).
3 Source: Institut für Arbeitsmarkt- und Berufsforschung (Institute for Employment Research) of the Bundesagentur für Arbeit (Federal Employment Agency), Nuremberg.
4 Including family workers.
qtr = quarter
20131st qtr41,89237,4214,47114,471345.4
2nd qtr42,26237,7804,48213,707324.3
3rd qtr42,51238,0454,46714,858349.5
4th qtr42,64438,2334,41114,620342.8
20141st qtr42,21437,7994,41514,811350.8
2nd qtr42,62638,2074,41913,761322.8
3rd qtr42,84938,4334,41614,963349.2
4th qtr42,95838,6014,35714,809344.7
20151st qtr42,51238,1564,35614,881350.0
2nd qtr42,98538 6414,34413,876322.8
3rd qtr43,27238,9254,34715,060348.0
4th qtr43,45739,1624,29515,077347.0
20161st qtr43,05938,7534,30614,860345.1
2nd qtr43,48939,1894,30014,269328.1
3rd qtr43,66039,3434,31715,132346.6
Change in % on the corresponding period of the previous year
20131st qtr0.81.1–2.1–2.8–3.5
2nd qtr0.71.0–2.10.6–0.0
3rd qtr0.61.0–
4th qtr0.50.9–2.30.2–0.3
20141st qtr0.81.0–
2nd qtr0.91.1–1.40.4–0.5
3rd qtr0.81.0–1.10.7–0.1
4th qtr0.71.0–
20151st qtr0.70.9–1.30.5–0.2
2nd qtr0.81.1–
3rd qtr1.01.3–1.60.7–0.3
4th qtr1.21.5–
20161st qtr1.31.6–1.1–0.1–1.4
2nd qtr1.21.4–
3rd qtr0.91.1–0.70.5–0.4


Persons in employment whose place of employment is in Germany, by economic sector 1
Sector of economic
activity 2
1st qtr2nd qtr3rd qtr4th qtr1st qtr2nd qtr3rd qtr
1 Results of employment accounts as part of national accounts (domestic concept); annual and quarterly averages.
2 Classification of Economic Activities, 2008 edition (WZ 2008).
Persons in 1,000
Agriculture, forestry and fishing637612676654604590653636
Industry, excluding construction8,0878,0508,0618,1148,1258,0648,0728,109
Trade, transport, accommodation and food services9,8569,7049,8399,9149,9789,8469,96810,008
Information and communication1,2131,2061,2141,2171,2181,2171,2271,226
Financial and insurance activities1,1871,1891,1831,1861,1941,1821,1761,168
Real estate activities467464466468468466465467
Business services5,7575,6215,7295,8305,8425,7785,8785,953
Public services, education, health10,46210,38710,43410,43710,59310,59210,64710,634
Other services2,9612,9152,9582,9862,9742,9292,9532,979
Change in % on the corresponding period of the previous year
Agriculture, forestry and fishing–1.8–1.1–1.7–1.5–3.7–3.6–3.4–2.8
Industry, excluding construction0.–0.1
Trade, transport, accommodation
and food services
Information and communication–1.4–2.0–1.7–
Financial and insurance activities–0.2–0.1–0.20.0–0.3–0.6–0.6–1.5
Real estate activities0.–0.2–0.2
Business services2.
Public services, education, health1.
Other services1.–0.2–0.2

The current national accounts data on employment by quarters and years and the current monthly time series are available on the labour market web pages.

Detailed data and long time series on persons in employment and the number of hours worked are available in the GENESIS-Online database in the tables on national accounts of the Federation (81000-0012 and 81000-0016) and on the labour market (13321).

>> Brief methodological description employment

>> Brief methodological description hours worked

For further information:
Ulf-Karsten Keil,
tel. +49 (0) 611 / 75 26 33,
contact form

Press release in other language


© Destatis

ZEW Discussion Papers DP No. 18-030: Do Digital In...

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