Payroll jobs were slightly higher than a year ago by mid-March as the economy continued to recover from last year's deep recession.
Australian Bureau of Statistics figures rose 0.2 per cent in the fortnight to March 13, building on the 0.9 per cent increase in the previous two weeks.
ABS head of labour statistics Bjorn Jarvis said most state and territory payroll jobs had either reached or passed levels of a year ago by mid-March
The only exceptions were Tasmania and Victoria, remaining 1.1 per cent and 0.7 per cent lower, respectively, for the year.
However, these overall positive results will be put to the test in coming months after the JobKeeper wage subsidy ended on Sunday.
Treasury estimates up to 150,000 people could be left without a job as a result of the scheme ending.
There is uncertainty about whether the labour market has the momentum to absorb these potential job losses, or whether the steady drop in unemployment will grind to an abrupt halt over the next few months.
This week will also see the scrapping of the coronavirus supplement, an additional payment for those on JobSeeker and other welfare payments.
Still, other new data suggests Australians have got over their initial anxiety about the end of JobKeeper, a program that successfully provided support during last year's recession.
The ANZ-Roy Morgan consumer confidence index - a pointer to future household spending - jumped 1.7 per cent in the past week to its highest level since 2019.
This followed two weeks of consecutive declines as the deadline for the end of JobKeeper approached.
ANZ head of Australian economics David Plank says receding rainfall and floodwaters along Australia's east coast appears to have lifted the mood of the nation.
However, the survey was taken at the weekend and prior to the announcement of a snap three-day lockdown in Greater Brisbane.
Previous lockdowns across the country have taken their toll on business and consumer confidence, potentially undermining the economic outlook in terms of investment, hiring and spending.
"Sentiment in Queensland may be tested by the emergence of a COVID-19 cluster in Brisbane," Mr Plank said.
"The rise in overall confidence to almost its long-run average is encouraging and points to the end of JobKeeper being successfully navigated overall, if not without some difficult individual circumstances."
Australian Associated Press