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Jobs news gets better for Clarence

Chris Ison

NEW South Wales was responsible for creating 65% of Australia's new regional jobs last year, and the Coffs-Clarence region did better than most.

New Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show the region had an unemployment rate of 4.2% in November.

It was the lowest figure since October 2014 when joblessness dropped to 3.8%, and better than NSW's 4.9% rate and the national average of 5.5%.

Residents of the region were almost half as likely to be unemployed in November as their neighbours in Richmond-Tweed, which had an 8.2% unemployment rate.

The data showed males were almost four times less likely to be unemployed than females, with a jobless rate of 1.8% compared to 6.6% for women.

The region recorded a 5.8% average unemployment rate for the year to November 2015.

The figures should be taken with a grain of salt.

Roy Morgan researchers looking at December's jobless rate put the national figure at 9.7%, which was 3.9% higher than the ABS data.

No regional data has yet been made available for December, but the Roy Morgan researchers say the problem runs even deeper.

The study found a record 2.69 million Australians were either unemployed or under-employed - up 42,000 since December 2014 to make up 20.7% of the workforce.

"Of concern is the record 1.43 million Australians under-employed - working part-time and looking for more hours or a full-time job," the study found.

Still, the State Government is spruiking the latest ABS figures as a win for the regional NSW.

Regional Development Minister John Barilaro said 70,000 jobs were created in regional NSW over the 12 months.

"This is further evidence that our investment in regional NSW is driving business confidence, creating more opportunities and delivering new jobs for regional communities," Mr Barilaro said.

ON THE JOB

Working in Coffs-Clarence

4.2% unemployment rate in November

Lowest since October last year when it dropped to 3.8%

1.8% of males unemployed

6.6% of women without work

69,300 labour force

5.8% unemployment rate for year to November

- APN NEWSDESK

Topics:  coffs-clarence, employment, jobs




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