The Australian economy added 121,000 jobs in August, data from the Australia Bureau of Statistics (ABS) showed on Thursday, much higher than expectations of 12,000 jobs in a Reuters poll.
The addition of 14,300 full-time jobs and 106,700 part-time jobs – the most in at least three decades – pushed the unemployment rate down to 6.1 percent, after hitting a 12-year high of 6.4 percent in July. Expectations were for a 6.3 percent reading.
Following the data the Australian dollar gained over half a cent against the U.S. dollar, rising as high as $0.9216 after touching a five-month low of $0.9113 in the previous session. Against the New Zealand dollar it rose to 1.1222 from 1.1150. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index was down 0.1 percent.