1367.5 - Western Australian Statistical Indicators, Sep 2007  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 03/10/2007   
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Image: Labour Market LABOUR MARKET


There were 27,000 job vacancies in Western Australia in the May quarter 2007, 27.0% (5,800) more than in the same quarter of 2006. Both the private (up 26.9% or 5,400) and public (up 28.9% or 400) sectors contributed to the rise through the year. Higher job vacancies in the May quarter 2007 indicates a potential rise in employment in Western Australia during the second half of 2007, given jobs can be adequately filled by the available labour supply.


In the three months to August 2007, the number of employed persons (trend) in Western Australia grew 1.3% (14,800) to 1,116,600. This followed a slightly lower increase of 1.1% (12,500) in the previous three month period. During the latest three months, employment growth was driven by full-time employment (up 2.1% or 16,600), with more male (up 1.8% or 9,500) and female (up 2.8% or 7,100) full-time workers in the state. In contrast, part-time employment declined by an estimated 0.6% (1,800) to 316,100 in the three months to August 2007, solely attributable to declining male part-time workers (down 3.3% or 2,800). Female part-time employment grew 0.4% (1,000) over the period.


The major industries contributing to Western Australia's employment growth (original) of 4.2% (45,100) through the year to August 2007 were health and community services (up 14.1% or 14,200), property and business services (up 8.2% or 10,900) and retail trade (up 5.5% or 8,100). From an occupation perspective, employment growth was strong for professionals (up 18.0% or 34,600), managers and administrators (up 14.0% or 10,800) and intermediate production and transport workers (up 7.7% or 7,400). Surprisingly, in light of on-going skills shortages, there were 6.8% (10,800) less tradespersons and related workers in the state in August 2007, than a year ago.


The number of unemployed persons (trend) in Western Australia increased 7.5% (2,700) to 38,800 in the three months to August 2007, mainly attributable to more unemployed males (up 11.2% or 2,000). Over the same period, Western Australia's unemployment rate (trend) rose from 3.2% in May 2007 to 3.4% in August 2007. Nationally, the unemployment rate remained steady at 4.3% over the three months to August 2007. Partly explaining the rise in unemployment in Western Australia was an increase in people participating in the state's labour force, with the participation rate rising from 67.9% of the state's civilian population in May 2007 to 68.6% in August 2007.