New Zealand: Unemployment rises to highest level in two years
August 9, 2012
In the second quarter, the economy lost 2,000 jobs in seasonally adjusted terms. The reading contrasted the revised 8,000 jobs gained in the first quarter (previously reported: +9,000 jobs). The quarterly print reflected 8,000 fewer part-time jobs, while 6,000 full-time jobs were gained over the previous quarter. As a result of the deterioration observed in the labour market, the unemployment rate rose to 6.8% on a seasonally-adjusted basis in Q2, which was a notch above the 6.7% rate recorded in the previous three-month period. The print, which represents the highest rate since the second quarter of 2010, also surprised market expectations that had the unemployment rate falling to 6.5%. The Reserve Bank of New Zealand expects the unemployment rate to fall to 5.6% by the end of this fiscal year (ending March 2013) and to drop further to 4.8% in fiscal 2013.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist