Australia's Unemployment Rate Hits 12-year High - Yahoo News

December 11, 2014

The participation rate -- which measures go!! the proportion of adults in work or looking for work -- rose a seasonally adjusted 64.7 percent from 64.6 percent. Total aggregate hours worked fell 4.4 million hours to 1,610.6 million. - 'Room for online lower interest rates' - Australia's economy -- which has avoided a recession for more than two decades -- is struggling to shift towards non-mining-led growth with a webblog sharp drop off in resources investment is expected next year. Pressure is building on the Reserve Bank of Australia to cut interest rates from their record low of 2.5 percent following weaker-than-expected third-quarter GDP growth data released last week. The slowdown in China, Australia's largest trading partner, has weighed on the resources sector and hurt the wider economy, while tumbling commodity prices have hit the nation's incomes. Consumer confidence has fallen in the second half of the year, with the latest survey from Westpac Bank and the Melbourne Institute released on Wednesday showing that sentiment had weakened to its lowest since August 2011. National Australia Bank senior economist David de Garis said while there has been growth outside the resources sector, jobs were not being created at a sufficient pace. The increase in the underemployment rate -- from 13.5 percent a year ago to 15.0 percent in the latest figures -- was also pointing to the slack in the labour market, de Garis told AFP.

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