Topics:  annastacia palaszczuk, jobs, queensland, tim nicholls, unemployment

Opposition blames public sector cuts for unemployment hike

QUEENSLAND'S unemployment rate has climbed to 6.3% leaving it well in front of the national rate.

But while the State Government admits the result is disappointing, it is adamant its policies will help the sunshine state bounce back.

Australian Bureau of Statistics employment figures released on Thursday revealed Queensland's unemployment trend rose from 6.2% to 6.3% between November and December.

Women were slightly better off than men, with the female unemployment rate remaining stagnant while the male rate went up 0.1%.

The ABS figures show there were 153,600 Queenslanders out of work in December.

The national unemployment rate still hovers at 5.4%.

The State Opposition seized the chance to take a swipe at the Newman Government's fiscal decisions, including wide-spread public sector job cuts.

Opposition Leader Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Government's mass sackings and constant negativity about the state economy and finances had contributed to its poor performance on job creation.

But Treasurer Tim Nicholls focused on job loses in the private sector.

"A weaker global outlook, including certainty about the US 'fiscal cliff' and a decline in commodity prices, has seen business remain cautious which has led to a weakening in labour market conditions in Queensland," Mr Nicholls said.

"The recent announcements of job losses at Esco, PPI, Boral, BlueScope and Crazy John's are further proof of difficult business conditions."

Nationwide, full time jobs decreased by 13,800 in December while part-time jobs rose by 8300.

HSBC Bank economists predicted the unemployment rate would stay below 5.5% and cast doubt over any future interest rate cuts.



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