Labour force figures released today by the ABS show that seasonally adjusted employment rose by 13,500 in December, to a record high of 11,985,900. 

Full-time employment rose by 9,300 in December to stand at 8,176,500. This follows strong increases in full-time employment of 85,700 in the previous two months. Part-time employment increased by 4,200, to 3,809,500.

The labour force participation rate rose by 0.1 percentage points, to 64.7 per cent in December. 

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate also rose slightly over the month, by 0.1 percentage points, to 5.8 per cent, as more Australians were encouraged to look for work in December.

The youth unemployment rate declined by 0.4 percentage points, to 13.3 per cent in December 2016.

Minister for Education and Training, Simon Birmingham, said today’s figures demonstrated the resilience of Australia’s economy in the face of global headwinds. 
“Since the Coalition Government came to office in September 2013, more than half a million jobs (519,300) have been created – an increase of 4.5 per cent,” Minister Birmingham said.
“Today’s jobs data demonstrates that despite global headwinds our economy remains resilient, recording the third consecutive month of strong growth in jobs, particularly in full-time jobs.
“The economic transition in the Australian economy continues to pose a challenge and we recognise there are around 740,000 Australians who remain unemployed.
“The Turnbull Government’s focus is on growing our economy so we can create new jobs – not just for those already at working age, but those coming through our schools and higher education systems.
“That’s why we are committed to delivering policies that are having, and will have, a real impact on the lives of Australians with more jobs and more opportunities, now and into the future.”
Key elements of the Turnbull Government’s plans include:

  • Our Enterprise Tax Plan, which begins with tax relief for 3 million small businesses. Paying less tax frees up more money to pay employees more and give them more hours of work;
  • Our $50 billion infrastructure investment in roads, rail, airports and dams, which creates thousands of jobs while making businesses and exports more competitive;
  • Export trade deals, which will continue to present more opportunities for thousands of farmers, manufacturers and service providers to export their goods and services to some of the largest economies in the world; 
  • A National Innovation and Science Agenda, to support Australian businesses to be leading innovators; 
  • A 20 year defence industry plan, which will not only strengthen Australia’s Defence capability, but drive high-tech employment; 
  • A youth employment package that will help up to 120,000 vulnerable young people through pre-employment training, internships and wage subsidies; 
  • Restoring the rule of law in our third largest industry, the construction industry.