This will change the German labor market


18,000 jobs at Deutsche Bank will disappear in the coming years. The late reconstruction of the bank, digitization, the low interest rate phase: there are many reasons why the bank is at a dead end and wants to free itself among others with the massive planned job cuts.

This is bad news for employees: the candidates for a voluntary departure are scarce. Last year, 6,000 employees left the company: among the more than 100,000 employees in 2015, by the end of 2019 it is expected to leave less than 90,000 units. Anyone who wanted to stop anyway, has already left by the end of the year. Others must find a new job – in a difficult environment.

Elsewhere, employees must leave

Because Deutsche Bank is not the only company that wants to separate from employees. Less than 6,000 jobs are in the plans of the German model company BASF. In the Siemens group 15,000 jobs have been eliminated, in Lufthansa, there are 4,000. Automotive companies want to separate from thousands of employees, their suppliers also pull the rope.

Do you have to worry? The answer is yes The miracle of the work of the past years is over. Those who become unemployed will no longer find a new job as easily as in previous years. This is true even for well-trained employees of Deutsche Bank.

Employees at Deutsche Bank: the number of employees has changed since 2007. (Source: at Deutsche Bank: the number of employees has changed since 2007. (Source:

What alleviates the labor market

After all: some points indicate that it should not be as bad as after the previous stasis. The job market is doing well despite the announced wave of layoffs, with still 800,000 vacancies available. Furthermore, many older people will retire in the coming years. The job offer decreases thus, which relieves the labor market. And when market conditions change, disadvantaged companies – very small companies, employers in remote areas or difficult industries, leaders who can't afford much – will still have a chance.

But more than that, the signals are not so good: the economic and structural problems are coming together this summer.

Not just at Deutsche Bank. From the beginning of the year, industrial production was lame. Brexit, the commercial dispute between the United States on the one hand and China and Europe on the other, leaves deep marks in the books of orders. Not even two million cars were sold abroad in the first half of 2019 – 15% less than the same period in the previous year. Foreign orders from German engineering companies also fell by almost ten percent. Furthermore: the now visible job cuts are essentially only those of companies and large companies.

No one knows how many jobs will be lost in medium, small and micro businesses in the coming months. Not everyone will find a new employer quickly, many will have to accept restrictions. For example, they will have to move, accept a job with less pay or use longer journeys.

The structural problems of the German economy

But worse than the economic ones are the structural problems of the German economy, which are gradually becoming visible. Deutsche Bank suffers not only from mistakes made at home or the consequences of the financial crisis. He suffers from digitization. More and more financial services no longer need a person to provide them. The algorithms are the best stock exchange operators, the fastest personal account managers, the most accurate deposit agents.

In the twin towers of the Deutsche Bank in Frankfurt, one worried about Berlin or Silicon Valley: will the digital digital scale provided by Facebook be dangerous for the bank? Are Fintecs better for customers than the traditional Deutsche Bank?

Weak consolation: employees are sought after in the assistance sector

Particularly interested will be employees with intermediate qualifications who carry out routine activities. For those who have been fired, it will be a small consolation that in the care industry or in the handicraft, even during the crisis, there is an urgent need for new employees. Their decision to live was banking: a poorer paid job in another industry would be an imposition on many of them, at least initially.

Although German economic researchers are confident about the overall development of the labor market, many people will face difficult decisions in the coming months and years. Qualification and training do not help everyone. Not everyone will make friends with the new job. Not everyone will be satisfied.

Ursula Weidenfeld is a business journalist in Berlin. His latest book is called: "Government without people. Because our political system no longer works."

. (tagsToTranslate) Finance (t) Weidenfeld (t) Deutsche Bank (t) job cuts (t) Labor market policy


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