Australia Employment Market Update – October 2016

Last week the monthly unemployment figures were released by the Australian Bureau of statistics. Employment stats are not something that public is generally interested in but for a twenty year recruitment veteran, with a little bit of a nerd streak such as myself they are very interesting reading!

Hi there, my name is Mark Smith, Managing Director of people2people one of Australia’s fastest growing recruitment companies.

Last week’s employment statistics were quite interesting and have created a bit of a stir amongst economists and analysts. Overall Australia’s unemployment dropped by point 1% to 5.6% from 5.7% however we actually lost approximately 10000 jobs


…and this is the problem with looking at the headline unemployment rate only. Our unemployment rate dropped because people simply stopped looking for work. This could be a result of people giving up there search but given the demographic shift I would suggest this is many of the baby boomers in Australia simply retiring. The number of people looking for work is called the participation rate which last month dropped point 2 %.

The other contributing factor is the continuing casualization of the workforce and the ongoing rise of part time employment. This month there were 43000 more people in part time work. The question that many of us are trying to answer is whether part time employment is representative of under employment or whether it is a trend resulting from the choices of people in the workforce. Most economists think its under employment.

Here at people2people we are seeing a strength in the contract and temporary market in the September quarter with only a slight softening in the permanent market. Interesting times and if you are interested click on the link below to look at the stats from the ABS for yourself.