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WA bucks jobs trend with more full-time work

WA has bucked softer-than-expected job figures with a firm lift in the number of people getting full-time employment across the State.

Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics released today showed the unemployment rate down to 5.4 per cent through May.

But it was driven by a sharp fall in the participation rate as the number of Australians with full-time work dropped by 20,600 through the month.

The full-time job fall was offset by a 32,600 increase in part-time employment.

Markets had been expecting a lift of 19,000 in total employment.

The drop in full-time employment led to a 1.4 per cent fall in hours worked.

In a sign of a slowdown in the jobs market since the start of the year, over the past 12 months the nation has created 303,900 jobs. Through 2017 a record 412,200 jobs were created.

However, WA defied the trend with the State’s jobless rate edging down to 6.4 per cent.

For the first time since December, both the trend and seasonally adjusted measures of full-time employment climbed to more than 900,000 through May.

But like the national figures, a drop in the participation rate helped bring down the State’s jobless rate.

Elsewhere, the unemployment rate lifted in Tasmania (to 6.6 per cent).

It was steady in the Northern Territory (4 per cent) while it fell in the ACT (to 3.7 per cent), South Australia (5.6 per cent), Queensland (6.2 per cent), Victoria (to 5.1 per cent) and NSW (to 4.9 per cent).

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