- New Zealand Unemployment Falls to 9-year Low
New Zealand unemployment rate declined to 4.5 percent in the final quarter of 2017, down from 4.6 percent recorded in the third quarter, the Stats New Zealand said on Wednesday. The lowest unemployment rate since the fourth quarter of 2008 when the unemployment rate was 4.4 percent.
While this was above the 3.3 percent recorded before the recession in 2007, it still points to improved economic growth rate and continuous job creation in New Zealand, an economy with 12.1 percent underutilisation rate.
“The underutilisation rate was just over 12 percent –reflecting about 340,000 New Zealanders with the potential to work more. This measure is just as important as the unemployment rate,” said Jason Attewell, Senior Manager of Labour Market and Household Statistics.
On a yearly basis, job creation climbed by 3.7 percent, with men and women contributing almost equally to the gain. About one-quarter of employment growth came from 25-29-year-olds, while nearly one-fifth of the number came from age group between 30-34 years old.
Quarterly, the unemployment rate for men stood at 4 percent, while the unemployment rate for women declined from 5.3 percent in the third quarter to 5 percent in the final quarter.
Employment growth measured by the Household Labour Force Surveyed (HLFS) rose 8.9 percent (25,900 jobs) in 2017. While the most jobs were recorded in the professional scientific, technical, administration and support services industry.
The New Zealand dollar dropped 0.4 percent against the U.S dollar to 0.7318. The rebound in U.S. dollar could push it below 0.7285 support level, a sustained break should open up 0.7222 price level.