Release type: Media Release


Record total and full-time employment growth – largest annual increase ever recorded


Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash
Minister for Jobs and Innovation
Senator for Western Australia

Australia's run of the best jobs growth ever continues with the number of jobs increasing for the 17th straight month in February 2018. This is the longest consecutive run of jobs growth since the monthly labour force series commenced 40 years ago.

Labour force figures released today by the ABS show that seasonally adjusted employment increased by 17,500 to a record high of 12,480,500.

Importantly, full-time employment surged by 64,900 in February to a record high of 8,533,600 and has now increased by 327,600 (or 4.0 per cent) over the last year, the largest annual increase in full-time employment ever recorded.

The Turnbull Government has put in place the right policy settings and this is now paying off with our economy creating, on average, more than 1,100 new jobs a day. This is 900 more jobs than the economy created under Labor per day.

In the last year the total number of jobs created was 420,700, compared with Labor’s last year of government of only 88,900.

In the last year 35,100 jobs were created per month, while under Labor the economy only managed 7,400 jobs per month.

Jobs growth over the last 12 months is almost six times stronger than Labor’s last year in government. In fact, 17,700 full-time jobs were lost in the last year of the Labor Government.

Since the Coalition was elected in September 2013, the economy has created 997,800 jobs, an increase of 8.7 per cent. Total employment and total full-time employment are at record highs.

The current rate of jobs growth remains high at 3.5 per cent over the year and is more than double the decade average rate of 1.6 per cent.

The unemployment rate in February 2018 is 5.6 per cent, while this is up marginally up for the month, it is down 0.3 percentage points over the year and reflects the fact that the participation rate is up to 65.7 per cent.

Minister for Jobs and Innovation, Michaelia Cash, said the fact that more Australians have jobs than ever before is a result of the hard work of the Turnbull Government.

"The best form of welfare is a job – when we came to government we made a strong commitment to create jobs and get people into work, and we are delivering,” Minister Cash said.

"On the 40th anniversary of the monthly ABS Labour Force Survey we have seen the largest annual increase in total and full-time employment ever recorded.

"Bill Shorten just does not understand that a strong economy creates jobs – his anti-business policies would be a disaster for our economy and a threat to all of those Australians who are benefitting from our job creation.”