Australian labour force participation rate at all-time high

In BICSI Bytes by

Australia’s labour force participation rate increased to a record high of 65.7% in March 2018, according to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures.


“The labour force participation rate is the highest it has been since the series began in 1978, indicating that the population is participating in the labour market at a record high level,” the Chief Economist for the ABS, Bruce Hockman, said.


In line with the increasing participation rate, employment increased by around 14,000 persons. Part-time employment increased by 13,000 persons and full-time employment by 1,000 persons, reflecting a slowing in full-time employment growth.


Over the past year, trend employment increased by 3.1%, which was above the average year-on-year growth over the past 20 years (1.9%).


The trend monthly hours worked increased by 0.2 million hours (0.01%), with the annual figure sitting at 2.6%.


The trend unemployment rate increased slightly to 5.6% in March 2018. It has continued to be relatively constrained over the past year, and is still hovering around 5.5 to 5.7%.


Over the past year, the states and territories with the strongest annual growth in trend employment were Queensland (4.3%), ACT (3.9%), and New South Wales (3.6%).