Job vacancies edge to record high in August

Job vacancies inched higher in the three months to August to notch a record peak, suggesting that demand for labour would remain healthy for a while yet.

Total job vacancies rose a seasonally adjusted 0.6 per cent to 238,200 in the June-August quarter, from 236,700 in the previous quarter, data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed on Thursday. That was the highest reading since the series began in 1979.

Total job vacancies rose a seasonally adjusted 0.6 per cent to 238,200 in the June-August quarter.

Total job vacancies rose a seasonally adjusted 0.6 per cent to 238,200 in the June-August quarter.

Vacancies were up 16.5 per cent on a year earlier, though the pace of growth did slow from the previous quarter.

Vacancies in the private sector rose 0.7 per cent to 217,600, again the highest on record. That was up 17.8 per cent on the previous year.

The public sector saw vacancies dip 0.1 per cent to 20,600.

Bruce Hockman, chief economist at the ABS, noted that the number of unemployed persons per vacancy fell further in the August quarter, implying that vacancies were increasing at a faster rate than the available spare capacity.

"This is consistent with other indicators in the labour market that are suggesting vacancies are becoming harder to fill," Mr Hockman said in a statement.

Analysts value the vacancies series as it has proved a reliable leading indicator of labour demand and turning points in employment growth.

Reuters 

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