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Australia Added More Jobs but Unemployment Increases

Australia’s job growth has hit an all-time historic high with four decades of consecutive monthly growth, the longest unbroken period of growth recorded since the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) started collecting data back in 1978.

However, although there are more jobs it did not stop the unemployment rate creeping up slightly to 5.5% during December 2017.

Snapshot (seasonally adjusted monthly change)
• Employment increased by 35,000
• Unemployment rate increased by 0.1 percentage points to 5.5 per cent
• Participation rate increased by 0.2 pts to 65.7 per cent
• Monthly hours worked in all jobs decreased 4.2 million hours (0.2%)
• More than 400,000 new jobs added in the past 12 months
• Part-time job growth outpaces full-time work, driving down average hours worked

Since December 2016, full-time employment increased by 303,400 jobs, while part-time employment increased by 99,700 jobs.

The seasonally adjusted participation rate, which measures employment by the working aged population aged 15-64 increased to 65.7 per cent. The female participation rate also increased to a further historical high of 60.4 per cent, having increased steadily over the past year.

Managing Director, BUSY At Work Paul Miles welcomed the job growth but warned businesses not to become complacent.

“While we are seeing continual growth in the job front, we need to be mindful that many of these jobs are part time and our unemployment rate is still too high.
“Now is not the time to sit on our hands. The government has some excellent incentives at present to help businesses employ people and in turn, help grow their business.

“The State Government’s Back to Work program provides an incentive of up to $20,000 Youth Boost and has been very successful. In addition, the Government recently added the Mature Age Boost incentive, where businesses who employ someone over the age of 55 that have been out of work for over a month could be eligible to access an incentive of up to $20,000,” said Mr Miles.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk also today welcomed the news that there were 143,900 jobs created in Queensland since January 2015.

“As the ABS has stated today, ‘the highest annual employment growth rates were in Queensland and Australian Capital Territory (4.6 per cent), followed by New South Wales (3.5 per cent)’,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“Since becoming Premier, I have made sure that we have had a strong focus on supporting economic opportunity and jobs growth.

“That’s why we have a four year, $44 billion infrastructure program and why we have successful programs like Skilling Queenslanders for Work and our very successful Back to Work program,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

BUSY At Work is an Australian Apprenticeship Network Provider offering free recruitment services for employers and career advice to job seekers.
BUSY has over 40 offices throughout Queensland, Western Australia, Victoria and New South Wales.
For more information about Back to Work or Skilling Queensland for Work call on 13 28 79 or check out our website


MEDIA CONTACT: Leanne Macnamara, Public Relations Coordinator
0438 173 960

ABS website:
More details are in the December 2017 issue of Labour Force, Australia (cat. no. 6202.0). In addition, further information, including regional labour market information, can be found in the upcoming December 2017 issue of Labour Force, Australia, Detailed – Electronic Delivery (cat. no. 6291.0.55.001), due for release on 25 January 2018.
ABC News
Sydney Morning Herald
Media Statements QLD

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