The Australian economy added more jobs than expected in December, easing pressure on the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) to cut interest rates in the near term.
Australia added 37,400 jobs, above expectations for a 3,800 increase, with the rise made up of a 41,600 increase in full-time employment and 4,100 decline in part-time employment.
That brought the unemployment rate down to 6.1 percent, below expectations of 6.3 percent.
"Despite today's figures... [we expect] some further deterioration in the unemployment rate over 2015 to a peak of 6.6 percent in Q2, in response to softer domestic growth outcomes and expectations," ANZ wrote in a note.
"While indicators of new labor demand have been increasing moderately, this is unlikely to be strong enough to counteract the flow of new workers into the economy and job losses in certain sectors. Today's figures should be characterized as a pause on the gradual uptrend," it said.