The May employment figures showed 36,400 new full-time jobs, and unemployment falling to 5.2%. Sometimes figures can mean nothing when taken in isolation. How about considering the fact that data from the United States suggests private employment rose there rose by only 41,000 in May?
That is an amazing result – especially when you consider just who much smaller the Australian employment market is. Again, comparative figures can give the best example. The latest employment results push Australia’s employed workforce to just over 11 million. The US workforce amounts to around 154 million.
The United States unemployment figure (running at 9.7%) equates to 15 million jobless workers! At 41,000 new jobs a month it would take 14 years (!) for the US unemployment rate to fall to Australia’s current level – and that does not take into account the growing population.
More people employed (especially full time) means more regular money available for expenditure and savings, more money going into taxation coffers and less drain from welfare payments. Of course, the reverse also holds true and the it is the extent of the United States unemployment, combined with the massive drops in house prices which points to the difficulty that the US government and Central Bank will have in bringing their economy back to good health.
Strong positions like this don’t last forever, so let’s all raise a glass and celebrate our luck for being here, now.