Getty/Matt Cardy

The Australian economy added 18,100 jobs in March, a huge beat on market expectations of 2,500.

There was a surprise fall in the unemployment rate to 5.8%, down from 6.1%, partly due to a falling participation rate.

The dollar has shot through the 94 cents mark, and was trading at 94.33 US cents a short time ago.

The biggest gain was an increase in female part-time employment, up 32,000 on the previous month.

Here’s the full ABS statement (emphasis added):

Australia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 5.8 per cent in March, as announced by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today.

The seasonally adjusted labour force participation rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 64.7 per cent in March.

The ABS reported the number of people employed increased by 18,100 to 11,553,200 in March. The increase in employment was due to increased female and male part-time employment, up 40,200 people to 3,524,000, offset by decreased full-time employment, down 22,100 to 8,029,100.

The number of people unemployed decreased by 29,900 to 713,200 in March, the ABS reported.

The ABS monthly seasonally adjusted aggregate hours worked series increased in March, up 8.0 million hours to 1,617.2 million hours.

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