Australia jobs reports in focus, December 2015

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The final jobs report for the month of December 2015 will be released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics early tomorrow at 00:30 hours GMT. Expectations are dovish heading into the release, with analysts expecting to see net job growth fall -11k after rising a sturdy 71.4k in November 2015. As a result, the unemployment rate is also expected to tick higher to 5.90% from 5.80% in November 2015.

Despite the dovish expectations, the employment growth in Australia has remained strong through the year more than anticipated by policymakers adding to the fact that the labour market data has been extremely unpredictable. In November, the median estimates were for a decline of -10k while jobs gained 71.4k instead, with October numbers being revised higher to 56.1k from 14.8k as previously estimated.

A lesser known data from the ABS, Jobs Vacancies released earlier today showed one of the best figures in over three years with 170.4k vacant jobs in November, up from 152.6k a year before, making the highest increase since 2012. The data validated the recent surge in the Australian labor market which has seen a lot of skepticism as data continues to beat the median estimates. The retail industry posted the highest number of vacancies followed by Tourism and services sectors with mining and manufacturing making the tail end.

Overall, the Australian labour market growth is attributed to the services sector which has continued to grow strongly, with nearly 53% of the growth coming from the services sector alone, according to the ABS data. It also showed that mining and manufacturing sector was showing signs of stabilization in the recent quarters despite some ongoing weakness in the commodity markets.

Earlier today, Chinese trade data numbers saw the Aussie being given a boost on import figures. With China being the country’s largest trading partner, China’s imports of Iron Ore increased 96.27 million tons in December, up from 82.13 million tons in November.

AUDUSD – Technical Analysis

AUDUSD (0.701): The Australian Dollar is currently looking to pull back higher after posting a 3-month low at 0.6927 and is supported against September’s close at 0.7017. On the weekly charts, support is established at 0.6911 and only a weekly close below this level could indicate further weakness in prices and would mark a break below the 3-month low.

AUDUSD - Technical Outlook, 13/01/2016
AUDUSD – Technical Outlook, 13/01/2016

The Median line plotted on the daily chart showed prices reversing off the lows at 0.6943 near the median line but prices are struggling under the previously established support level at 0.7047 – 0.7025. A break above this level will likely send the AUDUSD potentially higher to retest the breakout from the rising price channel at 0.7124. Also seen on the chart is the minor dashed median line which currently shows a failure near the lower median line. Therefore, the price level of 0.7047 – 0.7025 will be of importance as a break higher could see a test to 0.7124 while if resistance holds at 0.7047 – 0.7025, a move lower could be expected to 0.6911

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