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ANZ job ads: catch their breath



ANZ Australian Job Advertisements fell 0.3% m/m in February, on the back of a sharp 6.2% rise in the previous month. The number of job ads currently sits 13.3% higher than a year ago.


In trend terms, job ads were up 0.9% m/m in February, following a similar increase in the previous two months. The annual trend rate slowed from 12.4% in January to 12.1%, last month.




“Encouragingly, ANZ Job Ads have held on to their gain in January and, as such, a slight fall in February is not cause for concern. Business conditions remain elevated, job security continues to improve and capacity utilisation now sits at the highest rate since 2008. This suggests further gains in employment and ongoing inroads into the unemployment rate, at least through the first half of the year. Even as the labour market continues to punch above its weight, wage growth remains tepid. 


The recent Q4 WPI print provided some encouragement, with a positive surprise on the headline and the detail showing acceleration in wages across 60% of industries. To be fair, the uptick in wages was largely driven by the public sector, but on balance we continue to believe that a steady reduction in spare capacity in the labour market will gradually feed into wage growth. Another solid outcome in Q1 will support our view that wage growth is heading in the right direction, albeit with a gradual rate of improvement.”


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