A clothing store in Sydney advertises for staff in its shopfront.

‘No spare capacity’: hiring shudders as unemployment falls below 4 percent

The unemployment rate in Australia has fallen to 3.9 percent, although only 4,000 new jobs were created in April.

It’s the first time in the history of monthly unemployment rates — dating back to 1978 — that the unemployment rate has fallen below 4 percent (rounded up to one decimal place).

“The last time the unemployment rate fell below this was in August 1974, when the survey was quarterly,” noted Bjorn Jarvis, head of labor statistics for the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

A revision of the March figures means that the drop to 3.9 actually took place when when unemployment was originally 4 percent

The ABS figures show that the employment rate has decreased slightly to 66.3 percent, which is the main cause of the fall in unemployment.

Underemployment Drops to Pre-GFC Levels

Better news: The unemployment rate fell again from 6.3 to 6.1 percent, the lowest unemployment rate since September 2008, when the global financial crisis was just beginning to haunt Australia.

“Actually 92,000 full-time jobs were created and 88,000 part-time jobs lost,” NAB economist Ivan Colhoun told ABC News Channel.

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