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6105.0 - Australian Labour Market Statistics, Apr 2009  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 17/04/2009   
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SPOTLIGHT LABOUR UNDERUTILISATION


UNDERUTILISATION CONTINUES TO INCREASE

In seasonally adjusted terms the quarterly labour force underutilisation rate (QLFUR) was 12.5% in February 2009, an increase of 1.5 percentage points from November 2008 (10.9%). This represents the largest quarter to quarter movement of the seasonally adjusted data since the series started in May 2001. As a result of this increase, the trend QLFUR was 11.9% in February 2009, an increase of 1.9 percentage points from the trend low observed in May 2008 (10.0%).

1. Quarterly labour force underutilisation rate, Persons - May 2001 - Feb 2009
Graph: 1.  Quarterly labour force underutilisation rate, Persons—May 2001 – Feb 2009



Components of underutilisation

The QLFUR can also be thought of as the sum of the quarterly unemployment rate and the quarterly underemployment rate. Since May 2008, increases in both the trend quarterly unemployment rate and the trend quarterly underemployment rate have contributed to the increase in the QLFUR.

The trend quarterly unemployment rate increased from 4.1% in May 2008 to 4.9% in February 2009, while the trend quarterly underemployment rate increased from 5.9% to 7.0%, respectively.

2. Quarterly unemployment rate(a), Persons - May 2001 - Feb 2009
Graph: 2.  Quarterly unemployment rate(a), Persons—May 2001 – Feb 2009


3. Quarterly underemployment rate, Persons - May 2001 - Feb 2009
Graph: 3.  Quarterly underemployment rate, Persons—May 2001 – Feb 2009



FURTHER INFORMATION

For further data regarding the quarterly measures of labour underutilisation please see Tables 4.1 to 4.4 in this publication. For further information about any of the measures mentioned in this article, please contact Bjorn Jarvis (ph (02) 6252 6552 or email <bjorn.jarvis@abs.gov.au>).


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