Labour market

This page shows how the Northern Territory's labour market compares to other states and territories, as well as national averages.

Unemployment rate

Seasonally adjusted data, percentage (%) Jul 20 Jun 21Jul 21 Monthly change Annual change
NSW 7.1 5.1 4.5-0.6ppt -2.6ppt
VIC 6.8 4.4 4.50.0ppt -2.4ppt
QLD 8.7 5.1 5.20.1ppt -3.5ppt
SA 7.9 5.3 4.7 -0.7ppt -3.3ppt
WA 8.2 5.1 4.6-0.5ppt -3.6ppt
TAS 6.0 4.5 4.50.0ppt -1.5ppt
ACT 4.6 4.9 4.3-0.6ppt -0.3ppt
NT 7.3 4.8 4.6-0.2ppt -2.7ppt
AUS 7.4 4.9 4.6 -0.3ppt -2.8ppt

Source: ABS Cat No 6202.0

Unemployment rate range, minimum / maximum and current value

Unemployment rate - monthly data: Since 2000, the minimum monthly change in the Northern Territory unemployment rate has been 2 per cent and the maximum 8.5 per cent; typically the unemployment rate ranges between 3.1 per cent and 5.8 per cent. In July 2021, the unemployment rate decreased to 4.6 per cent.Unemployment rate - monthly data chart: Between 2015 and 2021 the female unemployment rate decreased faster than the male unemployment rate, and still remains lower than the male unemployment rate.

Participation rate

Seasonally adjusted data, percentage (%) Jul 20 Jun 21Jul 21 Monthly change Annual change
NT 72.6 69.7 71.21.5ppt -1.4ppt
Australia 64.7 66.2 66.0-0.2ppt 1.3ppt

Source: ABS Cat No 6202.0

Total persons employed

Seasonally adjusted data, 000sJul 20Jun 21Jul 21 Monthly change % Annual change %
NT127,578126,180129,4412.6%1.5%
Total full-time 98,51595,86797,4851.7%-1.0%
Total part-time 29,06330,31331,9565.4%10.0%

Source: ABS Cat No 6202.0

Employment growth range, minimum / maximum and current value

Employment growth - monthly data: Since 2000, the minimum monthly change in Northern Territory employment has been -5.2 per cent and the maximum 5.5 per cent; typically employment growth ranges between -1.9 per cent and 1.9 per cent. In July 2021, monthly employment rate increased to 2.6 per cent.Employment growth - YoY data: Over the past two years, part time employment has been the main driver of total employment growth in the Northern Territory.

Aggregate monthly hours worked

Seasonally adjusted data, 000's hrsJul 20Jun 21Jul 21Monthly changeAnnual change
NT18,04117,92718,3022.1%1.4%
Australia1,682,6881,780,8551,777,795-0.2%5.7%

Source: ABS Cat No 6202.0

Labour underutilisation

Seasonally adjustedJul 20Jun 21Jul 21Monthly changeAnnual change
NT     
Underemployed workers (000's)​9.76.77.817.2%-19.6%
Underemployment rate (%)​7.15.05.80.7ppt-1.3ppt
Labour force underutilisation rate (%)​14.49.810.40.5ppt-4.0ppt
Australia​   
Underemployed workers (000's)​1,519.61,094.01,147.24.9%-24.5%
Underemployment rate (%)​11.37.98.30.4ppt-3.0ppt
Labour force underutilisation rate (%)​18.712.812.90.1ppt-5.8ppt

Source: ABS Cat No 6202.0

Employment by sector

Annual moving average as at May 2021
Industry sector, original data, numbers
Full-timePart-timeTotal % of total employed
Agriculture, forestry and fishing  1,850 557 2,407 1.8
Mining  3,035 14 3,049 2.3
Manufacturing  2,944 420 3,365 2.6
Electricity, gas, water and waste services  1,801 135 1,936 1.5
Construction  9,182 1,170 10,352 7.9
Wholesale trade  1,509 225 1,735 1.3
Retail trade  6,466 4,772 11,238 8.6
Accommodation and food services  3,973 4,168 8,141 6.2
Transport, postal and warehousing  4,320 818 5,139 3.9
Information media and telecommunications  864 298 1,162 0.9
Financial and insurance services  1,010 138 1,149 0.9
Rental, hiring and real estate services  1,742 194 1,936 1.5
Professional, scientific and technical services  5,999 1,356 7,355 5.6
Administrative and support services  2,396 2,669 5,065 3.9
Public administration and safety  19,407 2,747 22,154 16.9
Education and training  8,959 3,480 12,439 9.5
Health care and social assistance  16,578 6,091 22,670 17.3
Arts and recreation services  1,814 1,318 3,133 2.4
Other services  5,365 1,216 6,582 5.0

Caution: can be volatile due to the small sample size from which NT data is derived
Source: ABS Cat No 6291.0.55.003

Job vacancies

Northern Territory, original data, numbers (000's)May 20Feb 21May 21Previous qtr % changeAnnual % change
Total vacancies1.74.85.04.246.8
   Public sector0.510.9-10.032.0
   Private sector1.33.84.17.948.5

Source: ABS Cat No 6354.0

Average annual salary by selected occupation

Occupation, value ($000s) 2021/22 salary range
Information technology 
Team leader70 - 97
End user support (L2)56 - 71
Office support 
Office manager66 - 87
Administration assistant (6 - 12 months experience)45 - 56
Resources and mining 
Senior mine geologist128 - 179
Boiler maker / welder97 - 122
Mining engineer117 - 163
Mine surveyor117 - 148
Construction (building) 
Project manager112 - 163
Foreperson71 - 112
Leading hand66 - 87
Energy 
Power systems engineer97 - 143
Solar engineer107 - 128
Insurance 
Assessing manager69 - 84
Team leader (claims)80 - 102
Accounting and finance 
Financial manager192 - 133
Financial accountant177 - 97
Internal auditor      66 - 82
Senior bookkeeper           61 - 71

1 Business turnover up to $100 million
Source: 2021-22 Hays Salary Guide

Average weekly earnings

Seasonal, value ($)
Full time, adult, total earnings
May 20 Nov 20May 21 Previous qtr % change Annual % change
Northern Territory  1,786 1,7771,8011.40.8
Males 1,911 1,914 1,929 0.8 0.9
Females 1,645 1,626 1,6370.7-0.5
Australia 1,770 1,770 1,7981.61.6
Males 1,891 1,885 1,9211.91.6
Females 1,577 1,584 1,598 0.91.3

Source: ABS Cat No 6302

Median wage and salary income

Value ($)2017-18
Northern Territory 60,636
Darwin City 63,218
Darwin suburbs 60,712
Litchfield 64,330
Palmerston 66,804
Alice Springs 56,067
Barkly 52,788
Daly, Tiwi, West Arnhem 42,446
East Arnhem 57,911
Katherine 54,776

Source: ABS Cat No 6524.0.55.002


Last updated: 07 September 2021

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