Release type: Media Release


Labour Force January 2020: More Australians in full-time work than ever before


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

The Minister for Employment, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, welcomed today’s news that more Australians are in jobs than ever before.

Despite a difficult January, with many Australians dealing with natural disasters, labour force figures released today by the ABS show that seasonally adjusted employment increased by 13,500 over the month, to stand at a record high of 12,995,400 in January 2020. Importantly, full-time employment surged in January, by 46,200 to a record high of 8,882,200 in January, and is now 143,900 (or 1.6 per cent) higher than it was a year ago.

Full-time employment has comprised 58.2 per cent of total employment growth over the last year.

Over the year to January 2020, employment has risen by 247,400 (or 1.9 per cent), above the decade average growth rate, of 1.7 per cent.
Part-time employment fell by 32,700 in January but is 103,500 (or 2.6 per cent) higher than it was a year ago.

While the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 5.3 per cent in January 2020, the increase occurred in conjunction with a 0.1 percentage point rise in the labour force participation rate, to 66.1 per cent in January, as strong labour market conditions encouraged more people to enter the labour market.

Minister Cash noted that while labour force figures can jump around from month-to-month, a total of 1,518,700 jobs had been created since the Government came to office, an increase of 13.2 per cent.

“The Government is also facilitating a record infrastructure spend, which will help create tens of thousands of jobs across the country and also has a $525 million plan to modernise the vocational education and training sector, including the creation of 80,000 apprenticeships,” the Minister stated.

“Today’s data continue to reflect the underlying strength and resilience of the Australian labour market and highlight the success of the Government’s efforts to stimulate ongoing, sustainable jobs growth, even against the backdrop of significant global and domestic headwinds,” the Minister said.