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Employment falls as unemployment rises to 6.0 percent
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  04 November 2015

Labour Market Statistics: September 2015 quarter  –  Media Release

The unemployment rate increased to 6.0 percent in the September 2015 quarter (up from 5.9 percent), Statistics New Zealand said today. At the same time, 11,000 fewer people were employed than in the June quarter. This was the first quarterly fall in employment in three years.

“Until recently, the labour market has been keeping pace with New Zealand's population growth, but in the past three months this has changed,” labour market and households statistics manager Diane Ramsay said.

“This quarter also had the largest increase in the number of people outside the labour force since the March 2009 quarter,” Ms Ramsay said. 

For the year to the September 2015 quarter, annual employment growth slowed to 1.5 percent, down from 3.0 percent in the year to June 2015.

“Over the year, most growth was in construction,” Ms Ramsay said. “The vast majority of this growth was in Auckland, as construction growth there continued to outpace Canterbury”.

Auckland (11,500 people) and Bay of Plenty (8,100 people) were the two largest contributors to annual employment growth.

Annual wage inflation, as measured by the labour cost index (LCI), remained at 1.6 percent, compared with annual consumer price inflation of 0.4 percent.


Sep 2015
quarter

Quarterly change

Annual change 

(000)

Percent

Employed

2,347

-0.4

+1.5

Unemployed

151

+2.0

+10.5

Filled jobs

1,830

+0.7

+1.7

Percent

Percentage points

Employment rate

64.5

-0.7

-0.5

Unemployment rate

6.0

+0.1

+0.4

Labour force participation rate

68.6

-0.7

-0.2

Level

Percent

Average ordinary time hourly earnings

$29.29

+1.0

+2.3

Wage inflation (salary and
wage rates, including overtime)

1114

+0.4

+1.6

See data quality for more information on these indicators and the data sources we use to compile them.

Ends
For media enquiries contact: Diane Ramsay, Wellington 04 931 4600, info@stats.govt.nz
Authorised by Liz MacPherson, Government Statistician, 4 November 2015

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