Release type: Media Release


Labour Force figures: More Australians in work than ever before


Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash
Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business

Labour force figures released today by the ABS underscore the strength and resilience of the Australian labour market, with seasonally adjusted employment increasing by 42,300 in May 2019, to stand at a record high, of 12,868,200. 

Confidence in the jobs market is strong. The seasonally adjusted participation rate rose by 0.1 percentage points over the month, to 66.0 per cent in May 2019, its highest rate on record.

Seasonally adjusted employment is now 360,300 (or 2.9 per cent) higher than it was a year ago and is well above its decade average growth rate, of 1.8 per cent. 

Full-time employment rose by 2,400 to a record high of 8,792,900, and is now 266,300 (or 3.1 per cent) higher than it was a year ago. Importantly, full-time employment comprised 73.9 per cent of total employment growth over the last year.

Part-time employment rose by 39,800 over the month, to stand at a record high of 4,075,400, and is 93,900 (or 2.4 per cent) higher than it was a year ago.

The number of people looking for work fell by 2,400 over the month, to 704,700 in May, and there are now 6,800 (or 1.0 per cent) fewer unemployed Australians than there were a year ago.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was steady in May, at 5.2 per cent, and is 0.2 percentage points below the rate recorded a year ago.

The Minister for Employment, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, welcomed today’s positive jobs figures, which reflect the Government’s prudent economic policy. 

“Since the Government came to office in September 2013, a total of 1,392,900 jobs have been created, an increase of 12.1 per cent. Our priority is to create 1.25 million new jobs over the next 5 years,” Minister Cash said.

"While ABS labour force figures can jump around from month to month, today’s data continue to reflect a strong labour market. It highlights the success of the Morrison Government’s efforts to stimulate ongoing, sustainable jobs growth, even in the face of significant global and domestic headwinds."