Jun 12, 2014

Flat jobs numbers have the economy marking time

This week's jobs data aren't anything to be worried about but it's clear the strong economic start to 2014 hasn't been maintained, Bernard Keane and Glenn Dyer write.

A big rise in unemployment in NSW is behind this morning’s flat jobs figures, which continue to demonstrate that the strong start to the year we saw in the March quarter tapered off.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics’s labour force figures for May had unemployment steady on 5.8% seasonally adjusted, but with employment falling by nearly 5,000 jobs, driven by a big fall in part-time jobs. Participation also fell 0.1 of a point back to 64.6% seasonally adjusted, the equal lowest since 2006. However, aggregate hours worked rose 1.7% seasonally adjusted.

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