New Zealand unemployment rate falls to the lowest level in nearly a decade

New Zealand's unemployment has fallen for the fifth quarter a row, as the economy continues to add almost 1000 jobs a week. Statistics New Zealand figures showed unemployment fell to 4.4 per cent in the three months to March 31, down from 4.5 per cent at the end of 2017. Unemployment has not been that low since the end of 2008.

The figures showed the number of people employed rose by 15,000 in the first three months of the year. Across New Zealand, Statistics NZ estimates that 340,000 people are in a position to take on more hours and would like to, however this fell by 5000 over the quarter.

Westpac senior economist Michael Gordon, commented: "Firms are finding it increasingly difficult to find new workers, as the pool of available workers has narrowed over time."

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