Job ads point to labour market weakness
ANZ job ads dropped 3.1 per cent in April, but the bank flagged reliability issues with one of its data providers, saying that recently reported tentative strength in the forward looking reading on the labour market may have been overstated.
The company also revised lower the job ads growth in March from 1 per cent to 0.7, saying that recent monthly data should be treated with caution.
“ANZ is currently investigating the reliability of data provided by a small internet website, which has been driving the recent improving trend in overall job advertising,” the bank said.
ANZ head of Australian economics Ivan Colhoun sald annual growth in the series may be overstated by as much as 5-7 percentage points.
“Data supplied by a smaller provider of internet-based advertising has been driving the tentative signs of a strengthening in ANZ’s overall job advertisements series in recent months,” he said. “ANZ is confident that the estimated drop in advertising of around 3 per cent reported in April is broadly correct.”
“ANZ will investigate and look to resolve these issues by the May issue of job ads in early June.”
The Reserve Bank in their quarterly statement on monetary policy said forward-looking views the labour market had painted a too optimistic picture.
‘‘The ANZ measure of job advertisements has picked up in recent months,’’ the RBA said. ‘‘However, over the past year these leading indicators have tended to overestimate net employment growth, possibly because they do not account for the pick-up in job losses associated with increased structural change in the economy.’’
The economy has slowed more than expected in the past half year, as exports struggled to recover from the Queensland floods and the strong dollar choked growth in other sectors.