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Jobs growth accelerates in August

Prashant Mehra  |  14 Sep 2017Text size  Decrease  Increase  |  

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SYDNEY - [AAP] Australia's unemployment rate has remained unchanged, but official figures show that the economy added far more jobs than expected in August, sending the Australian dollar back above 80 US cents.

The unemployment rate was steady at 5.6 per cent in August, meeting expectations for no change in the month.

However, the total number of people with jobs rose by 54,200, the Australian Bureau of Statistics data on Thursday showed, far higher than the 20,000 increase that economists had predicted.

Full-time employment rose by 40,100 jobs, while the number of part-time jobs was up 14,100.

The local currency rebounded on the news, climbing to a high of 80.1 US cents, compared to 79.75 US cents just ahead of the 1130 AEST data release.

By 1200 AEST, the Australian dollar had settled at 80 US cents.

The ABS data also showed that the participation rate, which refers to the number of people either employed or actively looking for work, was up 0.2 percentage points to 65.3 per cent.

Australia's jobs market has seen an acceleration in full-time job creation over the past six months. However, wages growth has remained weak, raising concerns about a dent in consumer spending.

Meanwhile, the quarterly seasonally adjusted underemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 8.6 per cent, while the under-utilisation rate fell by 0.2 percentage points to 14.1 per cent.

 

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