Economic Upswing and Vitalization of the Labor Market – Who Gains From the Upswing?
The current situation with respect to the economic development in Germany may be characterized as somewhat suppressed as opposed to euphoric. And this statement holds although the German economy is in an upswing phase since 2005, and the GDP growth rates clearly exceed 2% per annum. The main driving forces of this upswing are mainly from the German exports as well as the domestic investment decisions. Rather underdeveloped compared with the exports and the investment is private consumption. This development is accompanied by positive signals from the German labor market. Declining unemployment figures, increasing regular employment and a smaller number of people in active labor market policy measures are the accompanying positive signals from the labor market. But this in general positive development has not yet reached widespread groups of employees in the sense that their real income has also risen and they thus can dispose of a higher amount of purchasing power. This time lag in the different developments between employment and income may lead to a situation that perceived and actual developments may differ and that actually, there might be a gap between the two. The paper discusses what could be meant with „perceived” development and reaches to the conclusion that actual and perceived developments are not so far away from each other than one might have expected.