The ACT has Australia’s second-best performing economy according to CommSec’s State of the State report, the Territory’s highest ranking in three years and the nation’s best figures for relative unemployment.
The ACT has the strongest job market, being the only jurisdiction to record a fall in its unemployment compared to the decade-average. The unemployment rate for the June quarter was down 4.2 per cent from the decade-average.
In September, the ACT’s unemployment rate fell to 3.7 per cent from 4.1 per cent, significantly lower than the national rate which increased to 6.9 per cent. The participation rate remained at 72.5 per cent in the ACT compared to the national average of 64.8 per cent.
The Territory’s strong performance was mainly due to a strong jobs market, a result of stable public sector employment and few cases of COVID-19, CommSec Chief Economist Craig James said.
“In the overall rankings, the big improvers over the past quarter were the ACT, South Australia and Western Australia,” Mr James said.
Canberra wages in the same quarter were up 2 per cent while the Consumer Price Index, or inflation, decreased by 0.6 per cent, meaning Canberrans are seeing an increase in purchasing power as overall prices decrease.
House prices in Canberra went up 2 per cent in September and 6.3 per cent annually. The Territory’s economic activity in the June quarter was 20 per cent above its decade-average.
Tasmania remains Australia’s best-performing economy, leading the nation in relative population growth, equipment investment, housing finance and retail trade.
Victoria was ranked third behind the ACT, followed by NSW and South Australia equal fourth, Queensland and Western Australia equal sixth and the Northern Territory at eighth.