Australian unemployment rate drops to 5.7% in November

11:24, December 10, 2009      

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Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) says on Thursday the country's unemployment rate has surprisingly fallen to 5.7 percent in November.

The economy added a net 31,200 jobs last month, with 30,800 of them being full-time positions, the ABS said.

"Despite commercial banks lifting rates in excess of the RBA (Reserve Bank of Australia), today's magnificent employment results keep February very much alive," said Adam Carr, senior economist as quoted by leading newspaper the Australian.

"Still a long way to travel, but the RBA certainly won't be ruling out another 25 basis hike in the February meeting."

The country's jobless rate fell from 5.8 percent in October while economists were expecting the rate to edge higher to 5.9 percent.

Australia's employment rate has risen much less than economists- and the Federal Government expected during the global financial crisis. Six months ago, the Government was predicting the unemployment rate would peak at 8.5 percent.

Economists have since tipped a jobless figure of less than 6.5 percent, a level that is likely to be pared back even more after the strong gain in full-time jobs for last month.

Source: Xinhua
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