Small lift in job ads despite downward trend
How is your industry faring for job ad growth? BNZ Senior Economist Doug Steele brings you the latest insights.

Job ads have seen a small lift, but the overall trend remains down, with Canterbury and Auckland weighing on national totals. Meanwhile, Wellington remains strong with double-digit job ad growth. Plus, the average salary has risen 3.9% compared to the same time last year. Find out how the trends are impacting your region in this month’s employment snapshot.

Job ads up yet trend remains down

New job advertising numbers on managed to edge 0.6% higher in July, but this wasn’t quite enough to recoup June’s 0.7% dip. The trend remains downward. Job ad numbers are now 0.8% higher than a year ago—a substantial slowdown in annual growth from the 7.8% recorded last year.

Geographically mixed

The trend in Canterbury and Auckland job ads remains downward, acting as a drag on the national figures. Canterbury job ads remain well behind year-ago levels, although have shown some signs of stabilisation over recent months. Wellington, in contrast, remains strong, with double digit annual growth in its job ads from an already high level.

Community Services sector sees growth

Government-related industries have maintained positive annual growth. Community Services & Development leads the way with a significant lift in job ads, while the Government & Defence, Healthcare & Medical and Education & Training industries also saw increases.

Construction-related job ads lower than a year ago

Job ads in a number of construction-related occupations have declined over the past year. July saw some improvement in the likes of Construction, Design & Architecture, and Engineering but job ads in these industries remain below year earlier levels. This could well be associated with recent trends in Canterbury.

More applicants per ad

Recently released official employment figures for the second quarter of the year revealed solid annual growth of 1.7%. Despite a small lift in July, the downward trend in job ads on over recent months could mean a slowdown in employment growth into the second half of 2019. Meanwhile, applications per job ad continued to rise in July, a movement often associated with emerging slack in the labour market. This is something to watch given it is counter to the message from the official unemployment rate falling to 3.9% in Q2. Perhaps more applicants per ad is reflecting an increase in labour market turnover as employees look for better opportunities.

Salary on the up

The average advertised salary, $81,240, is up 3.9% compared to July 2018. Construction leads the industries for the biggest pay packet, with an average salary of $107,506.