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ANZ Job Ads Survey - January 2002

Data Flash (New Zealand)

The number of newspaper job advertisements fell 2.3% mom in January - the fifth decline in six months - and was 9.6% lower than a year earlier.

The number of internet job ads fell 21.9% mom to its lowest level since the series began in April 2000.

The decline was broad-based with Otago and Hawkes Bay being the only regions to record increases in January.

The chart below suggests that the current level of advertising remains consistent with zero net job creation on an annual basis. This stands in contrast with the most recent HLFS data, which pointed to employment growth of 0.9% qoq in Q4 alone. It is possible that the recent increase in labour supply (illustrated by the last HLFS and survey measures of skill shortages), has reduced the level of `repeat advertising' to some extent, and has caused the series to give a misleading impression of the extent of weakening in labour demand. We intend to look at this issue further.

That said, given continued uncertainties about the global economic environment, and still weak productivity performance, we think that businesses will choose to adopt a more cautious attitude to recruitment during H1 2002.

Ends


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