ANZ Job Ads Fall Again, But Economists Say Demand Is Stabilising

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ANZ has posted a 0.7% fall in Australian job advertisements in December, adding to a 9% fall throughout the year.

It was the third consecutive monthly fall but ANZ economists said the market was stabilising, and even improving in trend terms in NSW, WA and NT.

Based on today’s report, ANZ head of Australian economics Justin Fabo said the bank expected government employment figures to improve in December, and the official unemployment rate to fall back to 5.7% when new data is released on Thursday.

ANZ noted that Australia’s economic transition was progressing, with “further signs of a pick-up in activity in the non-mining sectors of the economy”. From the report:

Retail sales growth and building approvals have strengthened, assisted by lower interest rates, higher asset prices and the lower Australian dollar.

Together with the apparent stabilisation in the labour market, we see a further cut in the cash rate as unlikely, particularly given the RBA has continued to reiterate its preference for a lower Australian dollar.

The depreciation in the currency since mid last year supports a more balanced growth outlook for the Australian economy while we see further downward pressure on the Australian dollar in the year ahead as the US Federal Reserve gradually winds down its asset purchase program.

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