932,000 jobs lost between the March and June quarters

Media Release

Total filled jobs fell by 6.4 per cent and hours worked fell by 9.8 per cent between the March and June quarters, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Head of Labour Statistics at the ABS, Bjorn Jarvis, said: “The Labour Account provides the most comprehensive measure of total job losses during the COVID-19 period – a fall of around 932,000 jobs. This echoes what we have previously seen in falls of employment in Labour Force Survey data and changes in jobs in the indexed payroll data.”

The record decrease in filled jobs followed a small decrease of 0.1 per cent in the March quarter. The decrease between March and June was more pronounced in the private sector (down 7.1 per cent), compared to the public sector (down 1.9 per cent).

The number of secondary jobs in the labour market decreased by 19.6 per cent, with the rate of multiple job holding falling to 4.9 per cent of all employed people (from around 6.0 per cent prior to the COVID-19 period).

The number of job vacancies decreased by 42.1 per cent over the quarter, and was down 43.3 per cent on June quarter 2019. Vacant jobs accounted for 0.96 per cent of all jobs in the June quarter, the lowest since March 2002.

“In line with the impact seen in other indicators, the largest declines in hours worked since the March quarter were in the Accommodation and food services industry, down 36.0 per cent, and Arts and recreation industry, down 35.5 per cent,” Mr Jarvis said.

The Labour Account is the best source of headline information on employment by industry and sector, drawing upon the broad range of labour market statistics the ABS produces. It contains a range of key indicators for jobs, people, hours worked and labour income back to September 1994.

Further details can be found in Labour Account Australia (cat. no. 6150.0.55.003). These are available for free download from www.abs.gov.au.

Media notes

  • The Australian Labour Account complements other ABS measures to build a more comprehensive picture of the labour market. Labour Account data provides the number of filled jobs at a point-in-time each quarter, while the Jobs in Australia data provides insights into all jobs held throughout the year, and Labour Force Survey data measures the number of people employed each month.
  • Data contained in this media release refer to seasonally adjusted estimates, unless otherwise stated.
  • A glossary of terms used in this media releases is available with the publication.
  • When reporting ABS data you must attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or the ABS) as the source.
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