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Australian Help-Wanted Ads Fell 2.3% in August, ANZ Says

Australian help-wanted notices dropped for a fifth straight month in August as slumping business confidence delays hiring plans in mining states, a private report showed.

Jobs advertised in newspapers and on the Internet declined 2.3 percent last month after a 0.8 percent fall in July, according to an Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd. report released in Melbourne today. National vacancies advertised in newspapers slumped 6.1 percent last month, and Internet notices were down 2.1 percent, the report showed.

The figures showed weaker advertising for work in Queensland, Western Australia and Northern Territory -- regions with concentrations of mining and energy investment projects, ANZ Bank said.

“Recent trends in job advertising suggests the labor market continues to soften,” said Ivan Colhoun, ANZ Bank’s head of Australian economies and property research, in the statement. “A new element to the picture has been the softness in the states of Western Australia and the Northern Territory, which adds to the general moderate upward pressure on Australia’s unemployment rate.”

The Australian Bureau of Statistics is scheduled to release August employment figures on Sept. 6.

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