Unemployment rate falls back to 3.6 per cent

Australia's jobless rate dips further

The unemployment rate has edged lower to 3.6 per cent from 3.7 per cent as more people move into the labour force.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics recorded a modest 7000 increase in employment over September, coming in below the 20,000 consensus forecast.

“With employment increasing slightly, by around 7000 people, and the number of unemployed people falling by around 20,000, the unemployment rate fell to 3.6 per cent in September,” ABS head of labour statistics Bjorn Jarvis said.

“It is important to remember that a fall in unemployment does not always mean much higher employment.”

He said the fall in the unemployment rate in September was largely a product of a higher proportion of people moving from unemployment into the labour force.

The participation rate fell 0.2 percentage points to 66.7 per cent from last month’s record high of 67.0 per cent, but is still well above pre-pandemic levels.

Unemployment is still extremely low compared to historical norms and demand for workers remains high.

That’s despite a string of interest rate hikes intended to weigh on demand and bring down inflation, which is expected to flow through to hiring decisions.

The Reserve Bank of Australia has been monitoring movements in the labour market carefully, with some weakening in the jobs market consistent with the board’s strategy for taming inflation.


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