Jobless rate hits 19-month low

Australia’s unemployment rate declined to 5.1% last month, its lowest level for 19 months, figures have revealed.



The Australian Bureau of Statistics report showed that the jobless rate was down 0.2% from July, better than the 0.1% reduction tipped by analysts.


A total of 53,100 full-time jobs were created in August, although there were 22,100 fewer part-time jobs. The net gain was 30,900 million with nearly 230,000 jobs created since the start of the year.


CommSec chief economist Craig James said in a statement it would be “hard to come up with a better set of figures”, with the unemployment rate now at a 19-month low.


“The icing on the cake in the latest result is the forward-looking hours worked data. Hours worked by Australian employees have risen to record highs, surging by 0.9% in August. And in annual terms the growth rate is holding at the best levels since before the global financial crisis.”


“Not only are employees holding onto and finding new jobs, but existing workers are working more hours – a result that should ensure that the income side of the household budget improves in coming months.”


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