Australia: Unemployment rate drops in February
Seasonally-adjusted employment increased by 64,600 in February, following 10,900 jobs shed in January. February’s result was driven by a significant increase in full-time employment more than offsetting a decrease in part-time employment.
Moreover, the seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate dropped to 3.5% in February from January’s 3.7%. Additionally, the seasonally-adjusted underemployment rate fell to 5.8% in February from January’s 6.2%, and the participation rate rose to 66.6% from January’s 66.6%.
Commenting on the release, Robert Carnell, regional head of research at ING, stated:
“After the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) recent statement hinting that peak cash rates might be just one hike away, today’s labour data is a timely reminder to be very wary of such forward guidance.”
FocusEconomics panelists project the unemployment rate to average 4.0% in 2023, down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s estimate, and 4.3% in 2024.