Unemployment rate rises to 5.7%

QUEENSLANDERS continue to struggle to find full-time work, with the state's unemployment rate steady at 6%, the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed on Thursday.

The jobless rate returned to 6% in May, the first time since December last year, as nationally the rate hit 5.7%.In Queensland, the number of people without a job rose from 148,900 in May, to 151,000 in June.

This was driven primarily by a fall in the number of people in full-time work, down by just over 500 people to 1,667,900.

Shadow treasurer Joe Hockey, speaking in Brisbane, said Premier Campbell Newman was doing the best he could with the "mess" he was left by the previous government over a year ago.

Nationally, the figures showed the number of unemployed people rose by 23,700 to 709,300 in June this year.

While the jobless rate rose, the number of people employed also increased by 10,300 to 11,668,500.

Driven by an extra 14,800 people in part-time work, that increase was offset by a fall of 4400 in full-time work in June.

The number of hours Australians work went up again, rising a total of 8.8 million hours to 1,638.6 million hours.

Federal Employment Minister Brendan O'Connor said the country was still going through a transition, and despite patchy conditions, Australia had an impressive economic situation.

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