Job vacancies across Australia continued to rise in the three months to November, adding to signs of continued improvement in the labour market.
According to the ABS, vacancies increased by 3.1% to 167,000 in trend terms over the quarter, leaving the figure 11.6% higher than the levels of a year earlier.
It was the highest total recorded since the August quarter 2012.
Private sector vacancies rose by 2.8% to 152,100, an increase of 11.2% on a year earlier, while those in the public sector increased by 7.2% to 14,900, up 16.5% from November 2014.
Here’s an excellent synopsis of the regional-based data from Chris Caton, chief economist at BT Financial Group. Note the clear divergence in job vacancies between mining and non-mining states and territories seen in the November report.
In the three months to November, in original terms, national vacancies rose by 6,900 (4.2%). They rose in five States and the ACT, with the largest rises in the quarter being in Queensland (up 5,100) and New South Wales (up 1,600). Vacancies in New South Wales are at an all-time record high (the data exist since 1983, with an unfortunate cost-saving break between August 2008 and November 2009). Vacancies in Victoria and the ACT are at their highest level since August 2011, while in Tasmania they haven’t been higher since February 2010. Vacancies fell by 2,800 in Western Australia. In the past year, vacancies have risen most in New South Wales (up 10,900) and in Victoria (up 3,700). By contrast, they have fallen by 6,900 in Western Australia and by 1,300 in the Northern Territory.
Caton sums up the underlining theme of the report perfectly.
“There’s not a lot to say here. The continuing rise in vacancies is clearly consistent with a steadily improving labour market.”
The ABS will release its December jobs report at 11.30am AEDT tomorrow.