Australia’s July jobs report is about to be released.
After four months of strong, full-time led gains, economists are looking for another solid rise in employment today.
And with the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) inflation and GDP growth forecasts underpinned by an expectation that stronger labour market conditions will lead to a gradual pickup in wage growth in the years ahead, that means that all labour market data has now taken on an increased importance when it comes to the outlook for interest rates.
Today’s report will be no exception.
Here’s the state of play.
- After three months of enormous gains, employment growth slowed in June, rising by 14,000 to a record-high level of 12.167 million.
- It was the ninth consecutive month that employment increased, the longest stretch of uninterrupted gains since January 2011.
- Continuing the trend seen in prior months, full-time employment surged by 62,000 to 8.356 million.
- Explaining the modest headline increase, part-time employment fell by 48,000 to 3.81 million.
- Over the year employment increased by 240,200, the fastest pace of hiring since January 2016. At 2.01%, the percentage increase was the fastest since April 2016.
- Full-time employment rose by 175,400, outpacing a smaller increase in part-time employment of 64,800.
- The annual increase in full-time employment was the largest since December 2015.
- With full-time employment surging higher, total hours worked by all employees jumped by 0.5% to 1.7035 billion hours.
- The national unemployment rate held steady at 5.6%, largely due to a lift in the participation rate to 65%.
- Despite the modest lift in hiring, with more people looking for work, the number of unemployed Australians rose by 13,100 to 728,100.
- Today, another solid increase in employment is expected.
- Of the 21 economists polled by Bloomberg, the median forecast is centred around a gain of 20,000. Individual forecasts range from an increase of anywhere between 10,000 to 35,000.
- Both the unemployment and participation rates are tipped to remain steady at 5.6% and 65% respectively.
- With underemployment and underutilisation data not released until next month, it’s likely the split between full and part-time hiring, total hours worked and the unemployment rate will be used as a proxy for measuring labour market slack, a crucial cog in determining the outlook for wage pressures.
The report will be released at 11.30am AEST.
Business Insider will have all of the details as soon as the data hits the screens.