Big jump in employment; QLD records lowest unemployment rate since Feb 2009

A sharp jump in employment, as lock-downs ended in NSW and Victoria, has seen the nation’s headline unemployment rate fall back to 4.6%.

Australia added 366,100 to the number employed in November and despite a sharp rise in participation (to 66.1) this managed to translate into an unemployment rate of just 4.6%. Full-time positions accounted for 128,300 of the new employment and average hours worked per capita increased to 86.12 hrs (from 82.45 the previous month).

In Queensland we saw 14,200 added to employment (although full-time positions fell back by 3,000) and the headline unemployment rate fell to its lowest level since Feb 2009 at just 4.8%. QLD, which has not been as impacted by the Delta wave as NSW and Victoria, has seen less of the dramatic swings witnessed in the southern states. Hours worked per capita were up, although much less sharply than at then national level, to 86.97 hrs (from 86.71 hrs in Oct).

The number of workers registering zero-hours has fallen sharply and, as a result, the ‘effective unemployment’ rates across the nation have moved back to be more in line with the headline rates. Australia’s effective unemployment rate is now 4.9% (down from 8.3% in Oct). NSW’s effective rate is still at 6.0%, while in Victoria it has fallen to 4.8%. Queensland’s effective rate is low at just 4.1% and is the only major state with an effective rate below the headline due to a much higher level of participation than pre-COVID.

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