Australian job vacancies softened in April, but hiring boom appears to be continuing

By James Glynn

SYDNEY — Australian job vacancies weakened in April, but not enough to shake expectations of continued strong hiring and falling unemployment.

Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd.’s monthly vacancy survey. showed a monthly decline of 0.5% but remained close to its recent pandemic highs, said David Plank, Australian head of economy at ANZ.

“This confirms our argument that the demand for labor is still very high and should lead to continued strong employment growth,” he said. Job postings remain 57.3% above the pre-pandemic level.

Labor market conditions are tight, as confirmed by an increase in newly posted job vacancies of 3.7%, or 10,200 new job vacancies, in March, according to the National Skills Commission.

Recent data from employment firm SEEK showed job openings rose in 26 of 28 industry categories in March, with the hospitality and tourism roles seeing the strongest growth.

In addition, official data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed employment rose by 18,000 in March, while the unemployment rate fell to 3.95%, its lowest since 1974.

“We see the unemployment rate falling well below 4% in the second half of 2022, which should add to the momentum for higher wage growth,” said ANZ’s Plank.

Write to James Glynn at [email protected]

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