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Unemployment rate still 3.5% as Australians work more hours than ever!

Mechanic Apprentice
Mechanic Apprentice

The labour market remains tight, according to data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), which showed the unemployment rate is still 3.5 per cent (after May’s unemployment rate was adjusted from 3.6 percent to 3.5 per cent).

Bjorn Jarvis, ABS head of labour statistics, said, “With employment increasing by around 33,000 people and the number of unemployed decreasing by 11,000 people, the unemployment rate remained at 3.5 per cent.

“The rise in employment in June saw the employment-to-population ratio remain at a record high 64.5 per cent, reflecting a tight labour market in which employment has recently increased in line with population growth.

“In addition to there being over a million more employed people than before the pandemic, a much higher share of the population is employed. In June 2023, 64.5 per cent of people 15 years or older were employed, an increase of 2.1 percentage points since March 2020.”

To cope with staffing shortages, the figures also revealed that Australian’s are working longer hours than ever with monthly hours worked increasing by 0.3 per cent in June 2023, once again faster than the growth in employment (0.2 per cent).

Mr Jarvis further stated, “Over the past 12 months, hours worked increased 4.7 per cent, outpacing the 3.0 per cent increase in employment.

“The strength in hours worked since late 2022, relative to employment growth, shows the demand for labour is continuing to be met, to some extent, by people working more hours.

“Consistent with the stronger growth in hours worked, full-time employment has increased by 380,000 people over the past year, while part-time employment increased by 30,000.”

It also appears that women are helping to fill skills shortages with female participation rate at a record high of 62.6%.

Paul Miles, Managing Director for The BUSY Group stated, “Employers in the trade industries are looking outside the box to fill skills shortages and the female population are increasingly seeking out trade careers that were traditionally male dominated.

“We are seeing a growing number of women wanting to enter trade careers, often citing that they prefer more hands-on or outdoor types of work roles, along with the benefits of earning higher incomes than what many traditionally female roles offer.

“With the current labour market, many individuals are taking the opportunity to change or enhance their career paths, either within industries they are familiar with or skilling for a completely new career path.   

“The BUSY Group offers a range of employment, training, and career support programs for individuals – no matter what stage they are at in their career!”

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Australian Bureau of Statistics – June Labour Force Figures

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