Seek job listings are up 12.4% on pre-pandemic levels, with hospitality, trades, and healthcare leading the employment charge

  • The number of Seek job listings was 12.4% higher in February 2021 than a year prior, suggesting some renewed confidence in the jobs market.
  • Job listings grew 4.1% month-on-month, making February the fourth consecutive month of positive growth.
  • The news arrives just weeks before the Federal Government intends to wind back wage subsidies and unemployment payments, citing the strength of the economy.
  • Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.

The number of job ads on employment portal Seek was 12.4% higher in February 2021 than at the same point last year, suggesting corners of the Australian labour market are recovering from a tumultuous 2020.

In a new report, Seek claims job ads grew by 4.1% from January to February, marking the fourth consecutive month of ballooning job vacancies.

February was also the first month since coronavirus restrictions set in that every state and territory tallied year-on-year job ad growth.

Job listings in the construction, consumer services, industrial, and public sector all rose compared to February 2020, Seek reports, with the only year-on-year deficit in the professional services category.

Contextualising that 10.1% gap, Kendra Banks, managing director Seek ANZ, said those roles “tend to be the more office-based corporate roles that are based in a CBD,” where many offices remain vacant.

The biggest job ad contributions came from the trades, healthcare, and hospitality sectors. Tellingly, job ads in the human resources and recruitment field also grew 17% over the month.

The increase in job listings will surely be welcomed by the Federal Government, which plans to wind down its JobKeeper wage subsidy program and elevated levels of the JobSeeker unemployment payment at the end of the month.

But the latest Seek figures are unlikely to drive confidence across the board.

Commonwealth Bank economists forecast 110,00 job losses when when JobKeeper peters out, telegraphing another crushing blow to Australia’s uneven economic recovery.

Meanwhile, Australia’s unemployment rate was 1.1% higher in January 2021 than a year prior.

Social services advocates also maintain there are nine job-hunters for every vacant position, making Seek’s new figures a promising, if uncertain, indication of Australia’s ascendancy from the coronavirus crisis.

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