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How Germany got it right on the economy

German flagHarold Meyerson
11/24/2010

Germany may be small (with a population of only 82 million), but its trade balance is second to China’s. Its unemployment rate is at 7.5 percent, the lowest since Germany’s reunification (and lower than America’s). Wages are rising and the economy is growing. Germany’s “mittelstand,” or family-owned manufacturing businesses, are a key factor in their economic success. In the past, Germany was accused by the US and Britain of being too “locally focused”, but it is precisely this investment in its own manufacturing businesses that has kept Germany thriving. Germany has “stakeholder capitalism, not shareholder capitalism,” says Klaas Hubner, former German parliament member and owner of a successful mittelstand company. Germany’s economy, says Meyerson, is “running rings around America’s.”

Meyerson is a weekly columnist for The Post, writing mainly about politics.

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