2 Apr 2013

Job confidence at highest level in 18 months

7:51 pm on 2 April 2013

Confidence in the jobs markets has risen for the fourth quarter in a row, tipping it into positive territory for the first time since September 2011.

The Westpac McDermott Miller Employment Confidence Index shows perceptions of current job opportunities have improved though people remain cautious.

The index rose to 100.7 in the three months to March, up from 99.1 in the previous quarter. A number above 100 indicates optimists outnumber pessimists.

Westpac senior economist Felix Delbruck says sentiment is still quite soft but is starting to improve, suggesting the job market could experience a modest pick up.

"One thing that did improve noticeably in this survey is job security, so - despite those really gloomy reports we've had of high profile job losses, people are feeling more comfortable about their own job prospects than they were three months ago."