Australian leading jobs index rises in October

CANBERRA, Oct 10 (Reuters) - The Australian government'sleading employment indicator rose for the third month in a rowin October, although cyclical employment continued to fall, theemployment department said on Wednesday.

The department revised down its long-term trend rate foremployment growth to 1.6 percent a year from 1.7 percent.

The department said its leading jobs index rose by 0.095points to -0.073 in October, although the index was well down onits level of 0.445 in October a year ago.

The measures of cyclical employment fell to -0.466 inOctober for its 20th consecutive monthly fall.

"It is still too early to confirm that a renewed quickeningin the pace of employment growth above its (revised) long-termtrend rate of 1.6 percent per annum is in prospect, because theindicator has risen for fewer than six consecutive months," thedepartment said.

Official jobs data for September is due on Thursday andeconomists expect Australia's unemployment rate to climb to 5.3percent from 5.1 percent in August, although with an extra 3,750jobs for the month.

Since the early 1980s, the leading index has consistentlyanticipated turns in the labour market, beginning to rise andfall before employment does, but with variable time lags.

(Reporting by James Grubel; Editing by Richard Borsuk)

((James.Grubel@thomsonreuters.com)(+612 6273 2730)(ReutersMessaging: james.grubel.reuters.com@reuters.net))