Employment, hours worked and unemployment rose in June

Seasonally adjusted employment increased by 210,800 people between May and June, and the unemployment rate rose from 7.1 per cent to 7.4 per cent, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Bjorn Jarvis, head of labour statistics at the ABS, said: “The easing of COVID-19 restrictions in June saw an extra 280,000 people in the labour force, with more people in employment, and more actively looking and available for work.”

The 210,800 increase in employment was underpinned by a large increase in part-time employment (249,000 people) and a further decrease in full-time employment (38,100 people). Overall, the percentage of people employed in Australia increased 1.0 percentage point to 59.2 per cent, up from a low of 58.2 per cent in May.

“In June, around 24 per cent of the fall in employment through to May had been regained,” Mr Jarvis said.

Hours worked rose 4.0 per cent in June, but remained 6.8 per cent lower than March. Hours worked increased more for females (5.0 per cent) than males (3.3 per cent) over the month. Hours worked for females were still around 7.3 per cent below March, compared to 6.5 per cent for males.

Unemployment increased by 69,300 people to 992,300. Around 70 per cent of newly unemployed people in June were not in the labour force in May.

The underemployment rate decreased by 1.4 percentage points, to 11.7 per cent, but remained 2.9 percentage points above March.

The underutilisation rate, which combines the unemployment and underemployment rates, fell 1.0 percentage point, to 19.1 per cent.

The Labour Force release includes additional analysis of hours worked, including for those working zero hours, and for flows out of employment, including those who left the labour force. It also includes comparisons with US and Canadian data for June 2020.

Chart 1: Monthly changes in key labour force populations

/ABS Public Release. The material in this public release comes from the originating organization and may be edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.