Friday, March 16, 2012

Jobs. Mining comes into its own, behind health and aged care

And it seems to shift the geographical focus of other jobs


Jobs gained: Year to February

Health and Social Care +48,700
Mining industry +44,600
Public Administration and Safety +34,600
Rent and Real Estate + 23,200
Education and Training + 17,800
Financial and Insurance +13,600
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing + 7100
Media and Information Technology + 7100
Professional and Scientific Services +1900
Electricity, Gas Water +1800

Jobs lost: Year to February

Construction - 3100
Administration and Support - 5100
Arts and Recreation - 8300
Manufacturing industry - 23,900
Wholesale Trade - 29,900
Retail Trade - 35,100
Transport, Postal and Warehousing - 46,100
Accommodation and Catering - 59,400

ABS 6291.0.55.003

The mining industry has lept into second place as the nation’s biggest provider of new jobs behind only health and aged care.

The industry boosted its numbers 44,600 in the year to February taking the number of Australians it employed from 205,100 to 249,700.

Although two-thirds of the new mining jobs were in Western Australia and Queensland, NSW did well gaining an extra 8700, South Australia gained 3100 and Victoria 2000. The Australian Capital Territory - not often thought of as a mining employer - boosted the number of its workers recorded as being in the industry from 100 to 300 in what the Bureau of Statistics cautions is an unreliable measure.

Although Australia’s biggest employing sector, health and aged care put on more workers than mining, employing an extra 48,700 Australians in the year to February, the extra bodies scarcely moved the total which remains 1.3 million when rounded to one decimal place.

Health and aged care overtook retail as Australia’s biggest employer in 2009. Retail slumped further in the year losing 35,100 workers, most of them in Victoria. The currency-hit accommodation and catering sectors lost 59,400 workers, the transport, postal and warehousing sectors lost 46,100 and the wholesale industry 29,900.

Manufacturing was down 23,900 over the year but rebounded in the second half as 17,900 new positions were created in Western Australia.

The national employment figures confirm a shift west and north in employment... Western Australia gained 54,000 workers and Queensland gained 24,000 in a year in which Victoria lost 34,000 and NSW 30,000.

Even industries without an obvious connection to mining are doing most of their growth in the west and north. Western Australia and Queensland between them took on 45,700 of the 48,700 extra health and aged care workers. Queensland took on 14,000 of the 17,800 extra education workers.

Queensland gained 16,900 finance sector workers as Victoria lost 16,300. Western gained 5300 as NSW held firm.

The figures show part-time jobs growing at the expense of full-time jobs and women gaining jobs at the expense of men.

Australians with jobs appear to be putting in fewer hours. The Bureau of Statistics reports that only 10 per cent of full-time workers worked more than 60 hours a week in the most recent quarter – the lowest level in two decades. The proportion working more than 40 hours a week slipped to 40 per cent, also close to the lowest in two decades.

Separate Reserve Bank research released yesterday found wealth more evenly distributed in 2010 than it was in 2006 as a result of the damage inflicted by the financial crisis on the holdings of the richest Australians.

In today's Sydney Morning Herald and Age

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