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Unemployement rate falls to 5.2% in May

Australia’s unemployment rate has edged further lower, falling to 5.2 percent in May in figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today.

Unemployment RateUnemployment in Australia, seasonally adjusted, fell from 5.4 percent in April to 5.2 percent in May, suggesting the labour force is close to full capacity, putting pressure on interest rates with the risk of increased inflation looming.

The ABS reported the number of people employed increased by 26,900 people to 11.057 million, seasonally adjusted, in May. The rise in employment was driven by an increase in full-time employment, up 36,400 people to 7.780 million that was offset by a fall in part-time employment, down 9,400 people to 3.277 million. This was the ninth consecutive month Australia has seen a rise in the number of people employed full-time and is positive evidence that the Australian economy is returning to strength after the GFC.

The total number of unemployed was 4 percent lower, down 25,400 people to 600,900 in May, seasonally adjusted. Total hours worked in the economy also improved with the ABS seasonally adjusted monthly aggregate hours worked series showing an 2.9 percent increase in May, up 43.9 million hours to 1,574.5 million hours.

The participation rate, or those working or actively looking for work fell slightly, with the ABS reporting the seasonally adjusted participation rate in May as having decreased 0.2 points to 65.1 percent.

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David Olsen

David Olsen

An undercover economist and a not so undercover geek. Politics, business and psychology nerd and anti-bandwagon jumper. Can be found on Twitter: <a href="http://www.twitter.com/DDsD">David Olsen - DDsD</a>

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