Women lead the way in best ever jobs figures
UNEMPLOYMENT in New South Wales has plunged to it's lowest rate on record with the state propping up the job market across Australia as women charge into the workforce more than ever.
NSW data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics reveals the unemployment rate has dropped to just 3.9 per cent with a 0.4 per cent drop last month alone.
In January 47,200 jobs were added in NSW with more than 80 per cent of these taken up by women.
The rate of 3.9 per cent is the lowest since records started to be collected in February 1978.
The Reserve Bank of Australia estimates an unemployment rate as high as 5 per cent is a sign of "full employment" and a healthy economy.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian admitted she was shocked by the low unemployment rate in NSW when the figures were released yesterday.
"When I saw these figures it literally blew me away, I did not think we would get down to 3.9 per cent. I did not think we would have the lowest unemployment figure in the state's history," she said.
Ms Berejiklian said NSW was "propping up" the nation's economy with the strong jobs growth.
NSW boasts the lowest unemployment rate in the country with the national average at 5 per cent while South Australia struggles with 6.3 per cent unemployment.
The jobs boom has been especially beneficial for women - with 60.6 per of women in the workforce or looking for jobs.
The unemployment rate among women has hit a record low of 3.7 per cent.
Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said in last 12 months NSW has created more jobs than the rest of the country combined and in the last month 75 per cent of new jobs in Australia have come from NSW.
"Lachlan Macquarie himself couldn't have achieved this and he was building Australia," he said.
Ms Berejiklian acknowledged there remained "pockets of challenge" in the workforce, such as in regional areas where youth unemployment exceeds 28 per cent.
Since the last election the Coalition has created 420,500 jobs - smashing their target of 150,000 jobs.
Stephanie Choueri, 28, from Ramsgate was unemployed for the last six months after her contract had finished at a financial company.
"I generally do a lot of contract work but it has been difficult to find work purely because a lot of employees tend to promote internally and usually during the Christmas and New Year period you usually find a drought in jobs," Stephanie said.
"But this year has been very different and I found recruiters were picking up quite early and working through the holidays and touching base with potential employees."
Next week Stephanie will start work at Colonial First State as their senior marketing manager on a contract and says she is "excited for a new role and meeting new people" which will be a "different opportunity".
"With Colonial being a big company you generally find once you are in that they present you with a lot more opportunity within the company and you tend to not leave on the end of your contract date," Stephanie said.
"I also have a few friends looking for jobs and they're finding heaps of jobs surfacing from event management and HR, there just seems to be a lot of jobs and opportunities."
Stephanie said the low unemployment rate comes at a time where there has been "a lot of industry clean up" and "changes within the all industries".
"I think these jobs that are coming up really pave the way for new opportunities to make sure people are being supported in finding a job," Stephanie said.
"And with the emergence of new processes and new safety protocols again it's also seeing more jobs needing to be created which is helping with employment."