The September labour force data saw the headline, seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Australia fall to 5.6% (after August was revised up from 5.6% to 5.7%) despite a loss of 9,800 (and a loss of 53,000 full-time) positions. The reason for the decline can be laid squarely at the decline in the Participation Rate which fell to 64.5; its lowest level since Oct 2014. On a Trend basis employment grew at 3,900 (its slowest pace since August 2014) while the unemployment rate was at 5.6%.
In Queensland we saw a similar story with the Participation Rate falling to 64.3, which is its lowest level since March 2004. As a result, despite a loss of 4,100 jobs, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 6.0% (from 6.2% in August). On a Trend basis, however, employment actually increased by 200; this is a tiny increase but at least it is the first positive in 8 months.
Next Thursday will see the ABS release the regional labour force data at which time we will be updating our Conus Trend QLD Regional Jobs series.