Unemployment in Germany fell in February as growth in Europe's biggest economy picks up, official data showed on Thursday.
The number of people registered as unemployed in Germany dropped by a seasonally adjusted 20,000 in February, the Federal Labour Office said, beating analysts' expectations for a much shallower decline of 8,000 this month.
The unemployment rate -- which measures the jobless total against the working population as a whole -- was steady at 6.5 percent, the office calculated.
In raw or unadjusted terms, the jobless total decreased by 14,600 to 3.017 million and the jobless rate eased to 6.9 percent in February from 7.0 percent in January, the labour office said.
"The German economy expanded by 1.6 percent in 2014, thanks to robust growth at the start and at the end of the year. In the fourth quarter alone, gross domestic product (GDP) grew by a seasonally-adjusted 0.7 percent, driven mainly by private consumption and construction investment," the labour office said.
"During the course of 2015, the economy will continue to improve. The labour market is relatively unaffected by any economic volatility and continues to develop positively," it added.