The number of Australian regions with an unemployment rate below 5 per cent is at a six-year high, new data reveals.
The Department of Jobs and Small Business has published the Small Area Labour Markets (SALM) dataset for the December quarter 2018, presenting a snapshot of labour market conditions at a regional level. SALM provides estimates of unemployment, labour force and the unemployment rate for around 2,100 Statistical Area Level 2s (SA2s) and 540 Local Government Areas.
The report showed that 56 per cent of SA2s across Australia had an unemployment rate of less than five per cent, the highest rate recorded since December 2012.
Notably, in Victoria, around two thirds of SA2s recorded an unemployment rate of less than five per cent, a record high in the state since the series began in December 2010.
Labour Market Analyst Ivan Neville said the new data show that SA2s in capital cities were more likely to have recorded an unemployment rate of less than five per cent than those in other parts of the country.
“Just under 60 per cent of capital city SA2s recorded a decline in their unemployment rate over the year, compared with 51 per cent of SA2s outside of the capitals,’ Ivan said.
“Encouragingly, and in line with the strong labour market conditions at the national level, 58 per cent of SA2s recorded a fall in their unemployment rate over the year to the December quarter 2018,’ Ivan said.
“The data also show that 10 per cent of SA2s recorded an unemployment rate of 10 per cent or above in the December quarter 2018, which was seven fewer SA2s than at the same time last year.”
The chart below shows the proportion of SA2s with an unemployment rate below 5 per cent, comparing capital city SA2s with those in the rest of the country: