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Message subject : Surge in jobs growth leaves experts(AU)

This message was posted by . on June 15, 2000 :

Extraordinary new figures have cast doubt on the official statistics showing continuing strong job growth. The Bureau of Statistics reported yesterday that almost 100,000 new jobs have been created in the struggling manufacturing sector in just six months - despite surveys reporting that its output is flat or falling.

The breakdown of the official jobs figures, released yesterday, tells an almost unbelievable story. Just over two-thirds of the total growth in employment between November and May, after seasonal adjustment, was ascribed to a single sector - manufacturing - while employment in the wholesale trade fell through the floor.

The official figures report that a net 147,500 jobs were created in Australia over the six months to May. Yet manufacturing alone put on an incredible 99,000 employees in those six months, while wholesaling lost 107,000 jobs.

If correct, that would mean employment in manufacturing had shot up by 10 per cent over the past year, the strongest growth the sector has ever recorded since the bureau began publishing quarterly employment figures.

Yet on Wednesday, the bureau reported that manufacturing output had declined by 1.9 per cent in the year to March. If both figures are right, then manufacturers must have been putting on massively more workers to produce less output, with productivity plunging in almost every sector.

source: the age

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