Labour market figures released today show unemployment is rising steadily: from 3.5% in March (later revised up to 3.6%) and now to 3.7% in April.

The total number of people employed has fallen by 4300; and the number of people looking for work has risen by 18,400.

The number of full-time jobs fell by 27,100; but non-full-time jobs increased by 22,800 – most of which are casual jobs.  

Quotes attributable to ACTU Secretary Sally McManus

“The rise in part-time work sounds a warning: as the labour market deteriorates, insecure work increases. We are seeing clear signs of that in today’s figures. Secure jobs signal a strong economy; a rise in insecure work tells us the opposite.

“Unemployment is worsening and provides clear evidence the Reserve Bank of Australia should refocus on its full employment objective and not increase interest rates any further.

“Forcing unemployment up through relentless interest rate rises hurts real people and real businesses. The RBA must stop pushing workers and the economy off a cliff.

“Today’s figures strengthen the union movement’s resolve to push for reliable, secure jobs and full employment, and close the loopholes that allow employers to get out of paying proper wages and entitlements. We need an inclusive economy that delivers for working people.”