It's clear weakness in Australia's housing market is now impacting demand for workers

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  • Australian employment grew by 2.2% over the past year, with hiring accelerating over recent months.
  • Most leading labour market indicators suggest that hiring will slow in the months ahead, potentially placing upward pressure on unemployment.
  • Job ads placed on Seek fell 3.6% over the past year. The steepest declines were seen in industries linked to housing market conditions.
  • Australia’s February jobs report will be released on Thursday.

There’s no shortage of leading economic indicators out there that suggest Australian jobs growth will likely slow in the months ahead.

Here’s another, courtesy of jobs website Seek.com.au.

In the year to February, advertisements posted on its platform slumped by 3.6%, driven by declines in all Australian states and territories except for Western Australia and Tasmania.

SEEK

Helping to explain the broader national trend, advertisements are now declining in a majority of industries, led by those aligned to the housing market, adding to evidence that the downturn is now impacting broader parts of the economy.

In contrast, of those industries where advertisements are still higher than a year ago, most are dominated by the public sector. Ads for mining sector workers have also improved over the past year, reflecting stronger commodity prices and an expected lift in mining sector infrastructure investment.

SEEK

While pockets of strength remain in the labour market, the broader decline in advertisements is signalling reduced demand for workers.

If that leads to slower hiring, as has been the case in the past, it could see the recent downtrend in Australia’s unemployment rate reverse, increasing the odds of rate cuts from the RBA in the months ahead.

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