Employment is continuing to pick up gradually after the huge losses caused by coronavirus lockdowns, recovering around 30 per cent of the jobs initially shed.

Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday showed total payroll jobs increased 1.0 per cent between mid-May and mid-June, though they were still down 6.4 per cent on their level in mid-March before the lockdowns started to take effect.

“The recovery in payroll jobs between mid-April and mid-June represents around 30 per cent of the jobs initially lost,” ABS head of labour statistics Bjorn Jarvis said.

Between mid-May and mid-June, the easing of restrictions saw payroll jobs increasing faster for the under 20s, up by 4.1 per cent.

Between the week ended June 6 and the week to June 13, payroll jobs were unchanged, compared to a rise of 0.2 per cent the previous week.

Total wages paid rose by 0.2 per cent in the week, after a 0.3 per cent increase the week before.

There had been just over 13 million people counted as employed in early March before the lockdowns, while the jobless rate had been steady at 5.2 per cent.

Unemployment rose to 7.1 per cent in May, though that was held down by a sharp rise in the number of people who stopped looking for work.

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