Unemployment surges to 12-year high in Australia

6.4 per cent –  youth jobless figure hits 14 per cent

Economists had expected an extra 13,000 new jobs in July, leaving the unemployment rate steady at 6 per cent, but total employment fell marginally while the pool of unemployed swelled to almost 790,000 people.

Michael Janda from ABC News has reported that Bureau of Statistics figures show the jobless rate has surged from June’s reading of 6 per cent to 6.4 per cent over last month. This is the worst reading since August 2002.

Young people have been particularly hard-hit, with unemployment for 15-24-year-olds hitting 14.1 per cent – the highest level since October 2001.

The jobless rate for the 15-19-year-old subset jumped even more to 20.4 per cent – the highest since April 1997 – and was 30.1 per cent amongst those looking for full-time work…

unemployment

Michael has further reported that politicians are playing the ‘blame game’ over the rising jobless total with each side of politics blaming each other for the jobs figures released yesterday.

Employment Minister Eric Abetz admits the 6.4 per cent unemployment figure is a very high rate, and says he does not know when it will fall.

“As to when unemployment figures will turn around will depend on a host of factors, our task as a Government is not to predict the future,” he said.

Queensland, youth hit hardest

State-by-state

  • NSW: Unemployment up from 5.7 to 5.9 per cent; participation steady at 63 per cent.
  • Vic: Unemployment up from 6.6 to 7 per cent; participation up from 64.2 to 64.7 per cent.
  • Qld: Unemployment up from 6.3 to 6.8 per cent; participation down from 66.3 to 66.2 per cent.
  • SA: Unemployment down from 7.3 to 7.2 per cent; participation down from 62.8 to 62.3 per cent.
  • WA: Unemployment up from 5 to 5.2 per cent; participation steady at 68.4 per cent.
  • Tas: Unemployment steady at 7.5 per cent; participation up from 60.9 to 61 per cent.
  • NT: Unemployment up from 4.5 to 4.8 per cent; participation down from 74.8 to 74.4 per cent.
  • ACT: Unemployment up from 3.8 to 3.9 per cent; participation steady at 71.2 per cent.

Source: ABS. All data seasonally adjusted, except Tasmania, NT and ACT which are trend, due to small sample size.
The full story by Michael Janda can be read on ABC News

Join the discussion on Youth Unemployment at the Longterm Unemployment Conference to be held 18-19 August at the QT Gold Coast. It is paramount to Australia’s future to pull in our unemployment rate and reduce the impact on key at-risk groups.

The conference will address further, the causes and programs needed to provide opportunities for at other high risk groups: Disability, Mature Age,  Indigenous and Regional Unemployed.  It will focus on “Building Capability” to create employment in the future with over 50 presentations on research, policy, programs and case studies.

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