The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today announced its February tally. Jobless rate drops to 4.9 percent.
The Australian macroeconomic observers have something to cheer about, especially on the back of GDP growth contraction noted in the Q3 and Q4 2018 GDP print. The economy grew by 0.3 percent in September 2018 Quarter, and December 2018 quarter saw an increase of 0.2 percent. The second-half saw a slowdown, with annualised growth coming in at one percent, annualised growth vs. four percent annualised growth was observed in the first half of 2018.
The jobless rate dropped from 5 percent to 4.9 percent in February 2019. A total of 4,600 jobs were created in February 2019, even though it is a positive number, the expectations were of a gain of 15,000 new positions. The change in number was aided by the increase of 11,900 persons in part-time employment and a decrease of 7,300 persons in full-time employment. The total increase of full-time employment stood at 210,000 persons as measured from February 2018, and at the same time part-time employment raised by 74,000.
ASX200 closed the trading day flat at 6,165.3 and the Australian dollar was trading at US$0.7146 up by 0.43 percent.
Further, on the state-wise employment performance, the ABS release highlighted that Queensland saw the largest increase in employment, with an increase of 6,400 jobs. It was closely followed by the state of Victoria, with an increase of 5,700. While South Australia saw an increase of 3,800 persons and Western Australia was up by 2,800 persons. On the other hand, the largest decrease was in New South Wales with a drop of 5,800 persons in the job.
The data released by ABS, further highlighted that the unemployment rate increased in New South Wales to 4.3 percent and Victoria to 4.8 percent. The following states saw a decrease: Western Australia at 5.9 percent, Tasmania at 6.5 percent and Queensland at 5.4 percent. On the under-employment front, in Tasmania the rate increased to 9.7 percent, Victoria increased to 8.3 percent, and New South Wales increased to 7.6 percent. As per the ABS data, the largest cut was reported in South Australia down by 0.5 pts to 8.4 percent. Followed by Queensland down by 0.4 pts at 8 percent and Western Australia also saw a drop of 0.4 pts at 8.7 percent.
Finally, on the seasonally adjusted participation front ABS reported, that the rate decreased in Western Australia by 0.6 pts coming to 67.8 percent, Queensland saw a drop of 0.4 pts to 65 percent and South Australia saw a drop of 0.2 pts to 62.4 percent. On the participation front, Victoria witnessed a tad increase of 0.1 pts at 66.1 percent. As per the ABS release, the participation rate was steady for the remaining states of Australia.
The employment to population ratio decreased by around 0.1 pts to 62.3 percent, and as compared to the same time last year it increased by 0.3 pts.
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