We got the expected bounce in employment in February, with total employed persons rising by +64,600 as Aussies returned from their long summer breaks.
These solid increases came after two consecutive monthly declines, however.
The 3-month average gain in employment was thus very modest at only +12k.
With population growth rates running at record highs, we'll need to add around +30k jobs per month to keep the unemployment rate on an even keel going forward (which won't happen now the monetary policy is contractionary) confidence has been knocked lower).
The unemployment rate ticked back to 3.54 per cent, which isn't as low as we saw between July and November last year but is still pretty darned low.
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New South Wales has the lowest unemployment rate around the traps at just 3.1 per cent.
Overall, this was a solid result that keeps the possibility of a further interest rate hike alive.
However, markets are now expecting interest rates to ease over the remainder of 2023, with a very fraught situation ongoing internationally and bank liquidity issues feared in the US and Europe.
The labour force figures are expected to soften from here.