Monthly labour force statistics for Western Australia can be very volatile. The report provides some explanation of labour force measurement, and items that may affect monthly labour force data at the State level and contribute to volatility, beyond underlying labour market conditions.
Our analysis shows that monthly labour force data tends to be more stable at the national level than at the State level, and for more populous States. The volatility of monthly data, which can obscure longer term underlying trends, is a key reason why Treasury prefers annual average measures of employment growth, and annual unemployment and participation rates. Annual averages do provide clear information on long term underlying trends.