Europe on the skids?

GDP data for 2012 Q4 is scheduled to be released mid-February, here is the schedule. Recent news and notes from the blogs suggests that the German economy has slowed and may continue to do so, promoting fears of a slip back into recession territory. In terms of labor market outcomes, Germany remains the only country significantly above its employment levels compared to the 2008 peak. Spain continues its freefall, while most other countries have climbed back to roughly the same employment level of four years ago. Moreover, unemployment rates in many of the countries (Germany still falling and the U.K. moving sideways) in the EU have begun to drift upwards. While the U.S. had a larger percentage increase in the unemployment rate than any country except Spain over the past 4 years, it has now seen a decline in unemployment rates similar to that of Germany.

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