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Dec8-10, 06:23 PM
P: 199
Perhaps the personal habits of everyday Germans played a role in Germany's economic recovery; this article suggest Germans generally dislike debt.
Quote Quote by The American Prospect
The idiosyncrasies of the German economic model are striking and in many ways, make it seem behind the times. Few Germans own credit cards, and cash is still king. Then there is the somber German Sabbath. Thanks to a powerful alliance of labor unions and religious conservatives, most stores remain closed on Sunday.
The same article claims Germany offers better job security to German citizens than the US does to US citizens. Also, Germany implemented some kind of "shorter workweek" system to aid soften the blow of the recession on the German workforce.
Quote Quote by The American Prospect
Then there is Germany's notably labor-friendly employment system. Despite some regulatory relaxation in recent years, German workers enjoy much greater job security than do their American counterparts. As Herrigel points out, even in the midst of the current downturn, which has proved temporarily devastating for many manufacturing companies, there have been remarkably few layoffs. Instead, Germans have moved toward work-sharing via the kurzarbeit (literally, "short work") system.
And apparently Germans like to save their money, at least according to this article:
Quote Quote by (Reuters)
BERLIN, Aug 25 (Reuters) - The average German savings rate rose to 12.8 percent of disposable income in the first half of 2009, hitting a 16-year high, official data showed on Tuesday.

'That is the highest level in a first half-year since 1993,' a spokeswoman for the Federal Statistics Office said.
Here is the CIA's World Factbook with lots of information on Germany; US link provided for comparison:

Just comparing budgets; Germany lives within its means:
Quote Quote by CIA World Factbook
USA's Budget:

revenues: $2.104 trillion
expenditures: $3.52 trillion (2009 est.)

Germany's Budget:

revenues: $1.479 trillion
expenditures: $1.589 trillion (2009 est.)