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Thursday, 13 June 2019

Employment on a tear still

Jobs galore

At the headline level, the economy added a thumping +42,300 jobs in May, taking annual employment growth to above +360,000 or a rollicking +2.9 per cent.

Full time employment rose even faster at +3.1 per cent. 

New South Wales added +39,000 jobs in May, and a rip-snorting +168,000 over the year.

The composition this month was nearly all part-time, though, and capacity remains at large.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained at 5.2 per cent (with a very marginal improvement to two decimal places). 

Unemployment rates remains close to 40-year lows in New South Wales and Victoria, but elevated elsewhere.  

And there was no meaningful improvement in the trend for total hours worked, reflecting the part-time nature and composition of jobs growth. 

The underemployment rate rose to 8.6 per cent, the highest since March 2018.

The wrap

Overall, very substantial jobs growth across the year, but nobody believes this will be sustained.

There were nearly 40,000 part-time jobs added in May, perhaps in part reflecting temporary electoral commission employment. 

Despite all of the jobs, capacity rose again, and the trend for participation is at a record high of 65.9 per cent. 

Wages and inflationary pressures look to be as far away as they ever did, and the 3-year bond yield sunk to below 1 per cent for the first time on record as the rate cut bets pile up for July. 

Interbank futures are putting 75 per cent odds on a cut as soon as next month. 


The Adani mine in Queensland has been given the green light with final approval, so construction might begin imminently.