SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australian employment rose by less-than-expected in May with gains led wholly by part-time work while the jobless rate ticked down to its lowest since November, a mixed outcome that points to tepid wages growth.
Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released on Thursday showed the unemployment rate eased to 5.4 percent from 5.6 percent in April. It has remained between 5.4 percent and 5.6 percent for almost a year now.
Estimates - Australia - Labor - Market - Employment
According to some estimates, Australia’s labor market will be considered at or near full employment when the jobless rate falls to 5 percent or lower.
“A key reason why the unemployment rate isn’t falling even more is because more people are entering the job market in the search for work. Workforce participation is just off record highs,” said CommSec chief economist Craig James.
Participation - Rate - Bit - Percent - April
The participation rate dipped a bit to 65.5 percent from 65.6 in April, but has stayed near levels seen in 2011 as more women and senior citizens entered the labor force.
Overall, 12,000 net new jobs were added in May, below expectations of 18,000....
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