Job slowdown likely by end of year

Australia's strong labour market growth is heading for a slowdown by year's end, according to the latest employment report from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

The June employment report released last week forecasts no growth in employment and an unemployment rate of 5.2 percent.

While job advertisements on the Internet remain high, newspaper advertisements dropped by 1.9 percent in June following a 7.3 percent decline in May.

Newspaper advertisements are now 6.1 per cent lower than in June 2004.

ANZ Bank senior economist Tony Pearson said cooling growth in job advertisements was consistent with other indicators pointing to a slowdown in domestic economic activity.

"It suggests the exceptionally strong performance of the labour market over the past half year or so is coming to an end," he said.

"We anticipate growth in employment will ease to 2 percent by December this year, with the unemployment rate edging up to 5.4 percent."

National Australia Bank senior economist Spiros Papadopoulos agreed unemployment was likely to remain at its current low until the end of the year.

"Just given how strong the run of employment has been, we still see a little bit of strength left in the monthly ABS numbers," Papadopoulos said.

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