Labour force figures released today show there were 13,040,400 Australians in work in April 2021, with the level of employment now 45,900 (or 0.4 per cent) above its pre-COVID level in March 2020 and 902,500 (or 7.4 per cent) higher than the trough in the labour market recorded in May 2020.

Encouragingly, full-time employment rose by 33,800 (or 0.4 per cent) over the month, to a record high of 8,889,500 in April 2021, and is now 24,600 (or 0.3 per cent) above the level recorded in March 2020. Part-time employment remains 21,300 (or 0.5 per cent) above the level recorded in March 2020. 

The underemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage points over the month, to 7.8 per cent in April 2021, the lowest rate recorded since May 2014.

The level of unemployment in Australia fell by 33,600 (or 4.3 per cent) over the month, to 756,200 in April 2021, but remains 32,600 (or 4.5 per cent) higher than it was in March 2020. 

The unemployment rate also decreased over the month, by 0.2 percentage points, to 5.5 per cent, but is still above the 5.3 per cent recorded in March 2020.

Labour market conditions improved for youth over the month, with the level of employment for the cohort increasing by 15,900 in April 2021. Encouragingly, all of the increase was due to a rise in full-time jobs for 15-24 year olds (up by 23,600). The youth unemployment rate declined by 1.1 percentage points over the month, to 10.6 per cent in April 2021, the lowest rate recorded since January 2009.

While Australia’s labour market recovery following the pandemic has beaten even the most optimistic of expectations, the Government remains acutely aware that more than 700,000 Australians remain out of work. This is why the Government has provided unprecedented direct economic support, totalling $291 billion, which has helped keep businesses afloat, saved an estimated 700,000 jobs through JobKeeper and has put Australia back on the road to recovery. 

The Morrison Government’s 2021-22 Budget will help to cement Australia’s economic recovery and will secure our prosperity through measures including a further $15.2 billion in infrastructure investment, additional tax cuts for businesses and individuals, a further $2.7 billion to extend the Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements program and an additional $500 million to expand the JobTrainer Fund.  With a jobs-led recovery at the heart of the 2021-22 Budget, the Government is securing Australia’s future by rebuilding the economy and creating more sustainable jobs to ensure Australia continues to rebound strongly from the COVID-19 induced recession.