Germany's Parliament has elected Chancellor Angela Merkel to a third term as the leader of Europe's biggest economic power, nearly three months after an awkward election result forced her to put together a new governing coalition.

Lawmakers elected Merkel as chancellor Tuesday by 462 votes to 150 with nine abstentions. She now heads a "grand coalition" of Germany's biggest parties — her conservative Union bloc and the center-left Social Democrats.

The two are traditional rivals. Their effort to form a government after Sept. 22 national elections has been the longest in post-World War II Germany.

The new government will move Germany somewhat leftward, for example introducing a national minimum wage, but will take a largely unchanged approach to approach to Europe's debt crisis.