Employment rises, unemployment too


Employment has hit a new high, but unemployment is rising too.

Statistics New Zealand says almost 2.4 million people were in paid employment in the first three months of the year.

Employment rose by 28,000 people, or 1.2 percent in the March quarter.

But the unemployment rate rose as well, to 5.7 percent. That means 144,000 people were looking for work.

The figures might seem contradictory but reflect the rise in the working age population. More people are moving to New Zealand. We also have more people graduating and being available to work.

Wages are growing too, up 1.8 percent in the past year.

Almost half of the new jobs this year have been in Auckland.

That puts more pressure on the housing market.

QV says house values rose 12 percent over past year in New Zealand ($568,000) and 16 percent ($942,000) in Auckland.

Auckland real estate agency Barfoot & Thompson says a lack of supply remains a big problem.

Rents are rising too, up about 5 percent in Auckland over the past 12 months.


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