Employment Forecast: Employment Forecast May 2013

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The Fairfax Employment Forecast has provided an accurate picture of the current and future Australian employment market since 2003. The report is produced every six months independently by EMDA, and Australian based Economic and Market Development Consultancy, and sponsored by Fairfax Media.

The report analyses national, state, industry, and demographic employment trends and is designed to assist businesses, HR professionals, and individuals to make informed employment choices.

The May 2013 edition finds that there are a number of differences amongst sectors. Both the Mining sector and the Health and Community Service sector are growing strongly, but other areas such as the Public Sector and Manufacturing are declining.

The report also finds that the jobs growth has not been even amongst segments. Twilight Careers remains the fastest growing, with numbers again reaching record levels. On the other hand, the jobs market has been flat for Generation Y.

The market overall for Professionals and Managers in Australia has returned to growth after a weak 2011. At the state level, WA continues to be a standout in terms of jobs growth while SA is in the doldrums. NSW is growing again, while Victoria and Queensland are showing signs of tentative growth.

This edition also finds that a number of indicators are pointing to a better job market. Total hours worked have increased for the fourth month in a row.

The rate of job creation has also started to lift, while business and consumer confidence has started to pick up again.

Turning to the outlook, this report finds there are more positive signs going forward. The European debt situation is stabilising and the US economy is recovering. A contributing factor to the latter is the US Federal Reserve’s announcement of additional monetary measures, basically to lower interest rates further. In Australia, business and consumer confidence is better. Interest rates have fallen, which should stimulate the market, while business employment intentions remain positive, although subdued in the year to December 2012. The forward indicators therefore are pointing to a more positive outlook with growth picking up through the new year.

In the year to February 2014, 215,000 positions are forecast to be added to the Australian job market. This is an improvement on the year to August 2012, a low point, when just 58,000 new positions were added. However, even this growth would best be described as moderate. By way of contrast, in early 2011, more than 300,000 jobs were being added to the economy.