Who needs a rate cut? CBA's Michael Workman

Who needs a rate cut? CBA's Michael Workman
Who needs a rate cut? CBA's Michael Workman

GUEST OBSERVER

Today’s super‑sized 58.6k rise in jobs was well above market expectations which were centred on a rise of 15k (CBA f/c +20k). To keep it in perspective, there is a pattern that the last few episodes of monthly falls in jobs have been followed by very large rises. It is likely that the next few monthly outcomes are lowish and will bring the three month average back to 17k.

Full‑time jobs growth of 40k in October means that annual growth is 159k or 2%. Part‑time jobs rose by 18.6k to be 104k, or 2.9%, higher over the past year.

The unemployment rate fell to 5.9%, the lowest since May, from 6.2%. We expect to see the unemployment rate oscillate around the 6% level over the next 6 months.

Click to enlarge

Who needs a rate cut? CBA's Michael Workman

Forward indicators of the jobs market, such as job ads and employer intentions, indicate that monthly average jobs growth should be in the 17 to 20k range, or 200k annually. It implies that the national unemployment rate will stay around the 6% level, depending on the wobbles in the participation rate.

Over the past 3 years around 277k extra jobs have been added to the workforce, with about two thirds of those in part‑time positions. The new jobs are a net outcome of significantly higher job gains netted off against large job losses. The chart on the next page shows the restructuring across sectors.

Click to enlarge

Who needs a rate cut? CBA's Michael Workman

The extra jobs over the past 3 years are in health, construction, retail, education and transport. They can be generally grouped as services sector positions, which also tend to have a greater part‑time component. The lower AUD will hasten the jobs growth in sectors like tourism, accommodation and education over the coming year. It will more than offset the losses in the mining and related sectors.

There is also a clear economic growth transition going on in the States.  VIC and NSW recorded the largest increase in jobs growth (+26.1K and +18.7K respectively). 

The NSW unemployment rate, at 5.5% is now sitting at the lowest level across the States. It is followed closely by VIC at 5.6%. The residential construction boom, focussed in these two States, is one of the key drivers of employment growth.  The mining states also recorded good outcomes in October with QLD up 12.1K and WA up 14.8K.  SA jobs rose by 5.6K and jobs fell by 1.4K in TAS.

The next major economic release is the September quarter Capex which will be examined to see if there is any small improvement in the outlook for non‑mining investment. Next week’s RBA minutes are likely to show that the Board discussed a rate cut at the November meeting which could weaken the AUD.

Click to enlarge

Who needs a rate cut? CBA's Michael Workman

 

Michael Workman is senior economist, Commonwealth Bank.

Tags: 
Interest Rates Economy

Comments

Be the first one to comment on this article
What would you like to say about this project?