Australia: March Employment Falls Short as Jobless Rate Continues to Climb

By Trisha Andrada

Apr 18, 2024 06:02 AM EDT


(Photo : Virdventure / Pexels)

In March, employment in Australia decreased after a massive increase the previous month, while the jobless rate continued its upward trajectory.

The Australian dollar fell following the data but has since recovered to $0.6440. Bond futures for the next three years remained at 96.1

Net Employment Fell 6,600 in March After Rising 117,600 in February

According to Reuters, net employment fell by 6,600 in March compared to February, when it increased by 117,600. The market had anticipated a modest increase of 10,000 after February's record-breaking performance.

Jobs for full-time workers increased by 27,900 in March. The unemployment rate only rose a little to 3.8% from 3.7% a month earlier, although the prediction was for a 3.9% increase.

The figure is according to data released Thursday, April 18, by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

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The Data Paints Clearer Picture of the Job Market's Current Situation: Analysts

As the impact of big seasonal-led statistical fluctuations weakens in March, analysts believe the data gives a better picture of the present state of the labor market.

Bjorn Jarvis, ABS head of labor statistics, said in a statement: "The small drop in employment in March followed a larger-than-usual flow of people into employment in February... However, in March, the flows into employment had returned to a more usual pattern. The [labor] market remained relatively tight in March," Reuters reported.

After three consecutive sessions, the Reserve Bank of Australia has kept interest rates at 4.35%, reflecting growing optimism that the labor market would continue to loosen.

Nevertheless, it was stated during its most recent meeting last month that no policy decisions had been made. The central bank has described the present state of the labor market as tight, yet they still anticipate the unemployment rate to rise to 4.2% in June and 4.3% in December.

READ MORE: Most Australians Worry About Cashless Society Amid the Rise of Digital Payment Methods, New Research Shows

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