March 2, 2017 / 7:37 AM / 9 months ago

Union says German textile workers to get 4.4 pct wage hike

BERLIN, March 2 (Reuters) - Germany’s trade union IG Metall and employers said they have agreed a 4.4 percent pay rise for 100,000 workers in the west German textile and clothing industry, the latest sector in Europe’s largest economy to grant employees a solid increase.

IG Metall said wages would increase 2.7 percent by Aug. 1 and then by a further 1.7 percent by Sept. 1 2018. Workers will also get one-off payments worth a total of 320 euros for the months February to July 2017.

The wage hike - agreed by the union and employers overnight - comes at a time when domestic demand has overtaken exports as the main source of growth for the German economy.

Private consumption helped the German economy to grow by 1.9 percent in 2016 and economists expect domestic demand to drive growth this year thanks to record-high employment, increased job security, rising wages and rock-bottom borrowing costs.

In February, Germany’s federal states agreed with trade unions a two-stage wage increase of 4.35 percent for more than two million civil servants and other public sector employees. (Reporting by Ralf Bode; Writing by Michelle Martin; Editing by Richard Lough)

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