Labour force figures for August: Employment reaches a new record high

Labour force figures released today by the ABS underline the continued strength of the Australian labour market, with seasonally adjusted employment increasing by 34,700, exceeding all market expectations, to stand at a record high of 12,926,900 in August 2019.

The Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash welcomed the new figures. Employment has now increased for 35 consecutive months, the most consecutive monthly increases in employment ever recorded since the monthly labour force series commenced more than 40 years ago.

Seasonally adjusted employment is now 310,700 (or 2.5 per cent) higher than it was a year ago and is well above its decade annual average growth rate of 1.8 per cent.

While seasonally adjusted full-time employment fell by 15,500 in August, it remains 186,700 (or 2.2 per cent) higher than it was a year ago.

Notably, full-time employment comprised 60.1 per cent of total employment growth over the last year.

Part-time employment rose by 50,200 in August and is now 124,000 (or 3.1 per cent) higher than it was a year ago.

Importantly, the participation rate reached a record high of 66.2 per cent in August 2019, up by 0.1 percentage points over the month and 0.5 percentage points over the year.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose marginally over the month, to 5.3 per cent in August 2019, but remains equal to the rate recorded in August 2018.

The Minister for Employment, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, welcomed today’s positive jobs figures, which reflect the Government’s prudent economic policy stance.

“Since the Government came to office in September 2013, a total of 1,450,600 jobs have been created, an increase of 12.6 per cent,” the Minister said.

While ABS labour force figures can jump around from month to month, today’s data continue to reflect a strong labour market and highlight the success of the Government’s efforts to stimulate ongoing, sustainable jobs growth, even in the face of significant global and domestic headwinds.

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