Australia’s jobless rate has fallen below 6 per cent for the first time in five months, surprising economists and delivering a boost to the administration of Malcolm Turnbull, the country’s new prime minister.
The economy added 58,600 jobs in October, almost four times more than consensus forecasts, suggesting it was performing better than many investors and economists expected.
Justin Fabo, economist at ANZ Bank, said the jobs numbers published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics showed “startling strength” and said a cut in official interest rates was now less likely.
“We are always wary of reading too much into the monthly labour force ‘lottery’ but even looking through the noise it’s hard not to conclude that current labour market conditions in Australia are strong,” said Mr Fabo.
The data buoyed the Australian dollar, up as much as 1 per cent to $0.7134 and on track for its best one-day gain in a month.