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CANBERRA, AAP – LABOUR FORCE DATA FOR DECEMBER:

* Unemployment rate – 6.6 per cent versus 6.8 per cent in November

* Underemployment rate (employed people seeking additional work) – 8.5 per cent versus 9.4 per cent

* Employment rose 50,000

* Full-time positions rose 35,700

* Part-time employment rose 14,300

* Participation rate (people working or looking for work): 66.2 per cent versus 66.1 per cent

STATE UNEMPLOYMENT RATES

NSW – 6.4 per cent in December versus 6.5 per cent in November

Vic – 6.5 per cent versus 7.1 per cent

Qld – 7.5 per cent versus 7.7 per cent

SA – 6.4 per cent versus 6.2 per cent

WA – 6.2 per cent versus 6.3 per cent

Tas – 7.0 per cent versus 7.9 per cent

NT – 5.4 per cent versus 5.9 per cent

ACT – 3.7 per cent versus 4.0 per cent

(Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics)