Unemployment up, but so is the stock market

The unemployment rate rose during December in line with economists’ expectations, according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The data shows Australia lost 5,500 jobs during the month, although analysts had expected the figure to be 10,000 jobs.

Full-time employment fell by 13,800, while part-time employment rose by 8,300.

The unemployment rate now sits at 5.4%, up from the 5.2% recorded in November.

Investors didn’t seem to mind though. 

The Australian sharemarket hit a 20-month high at open and is continuing to rise.

The S&P/ASX 200 benchmark was at 4774.3 at 11:50 AEST, up 35.9 points.

Banks, consumer staples and energy companies continued to perform well, but iron ore prices continued to drop.

This is despite a weak lead from the United States, where the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 23.66 points or 0.17%.

This is adapted from an article first published on LeadingCompany’s sister site, SmartCompany.

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