Australia’s Jobless Rate Jumps to 10-year High

Australia’s economy unexpectedly lost jobs in January, data showed on Thursday, while jobless rate spiked to a 10-year high.  The number of people employed shrank 12,200 in the month, according to figures from the Australia Bureau of Statistics, versus a Reuters poll expecting an addition of 5,000 jobs, pushing the unemployment rate to 6.4 percent, much higher than the 6.2 percent expected print.

The data will add to the case of further monetary easing. The Reserve Bank of Australia cut rates last week for the first time since August 2013 by a quarter point to a fresh record low of 2.25 percent.

The debt market now implies a 60 percent probability of a rate cut in March, and over 90 percent for April, Reuters reported. It even moved to price in a sizeable chance rates would hit 1.75 percent late this year.

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