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6286.0 - Australians' Employment and Unemployment Patterns, 1994 - 1997  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 19/10/1998  Ceased
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October 19, 1998
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)

ABS says no work in more than two years for one in four job seekers

Australian Bureau of Statistics survey results published today show that of people who were Jobseekers in May 1995, 23 per cent - or almost one in four - did not find any work at all between that time and September 1997. A further 16 per cent found less than six months' work in total over that period.

The proportion of Jobseekers who were working increased steadily between May 1995 and May 1996, to 45 per cent, but after this rose only gradually, to 52 per cent in September 1997.

Compared with those in other age groups, a larger proportion of Jobseekers aged 15 -19 had worked between May 1995 and September 1997 (87 per cent of 15-19 year olds compared with 76 per cent of other Jobseekers), but at September 1997 a larger proportion of this age group were in shorter-term work or were looking for work while working (25 per cent compared with 19 per cent of other Jobseekers).

At September 1997, 32 per cent of Jobseekers were in 'stable' work (either full-time or part-time), that is, they were in a job which had lasted for six months or more and were not concurrently looking for work.

This information is drawn from Australians' Employment and Unemployment Patterns, 1994 - 1997, which provides insight into the longer-term labour market and social experiences of both Jobseekers and the general population. The figures are from the third year of a longitudinal survey which collected information from the same group of people over the three years September 1994 to September 1997.

Other key findings about people who were Jobseekers in May 1995 include:
  • 61 per cent of those who were working at September 1997 were in stable jobs (compared with 83 per cent of the general population);
  • 56 per cent of those earning a wage or salary were in permanent work (compared with 76 per cent of the general population);
  • 9 per cent of those who were in casual work at September 1996 had moved to permanent work in the same job by September 1997; and,
  • 63 per cent of stable jobs held by Jobseekers at September 1997 were in less skilled occupations (compared with 43 per cent of those held by the general population). Less skilled occupations include Intermediate and Elementary clerical, sales and service workers, Intermediate production and transport workers, and Labourers and related workers.

Australians' Employment and Unemployment Patterns, 1994-1997 (cat. no. 6286.0) is available from ABS bookshops. A summary of the publication isavailable from this site.

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