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Australia jobless rate falls to 5.1% in August, but prospects are dim

SYDNEY -- Australia's jobless rate saw a surprise fall to 5.1 percent in August, but the overall picture was not so bright, with 8,800 jobs shed and a drop in the participation rate and hours worked.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics said the jobless rate fell 0.1 percentage point from 5.2 percent in July, while it was also better than the increase to 5.3 percent expected by analysts.

The result was underpinned by the creation of 600 extra full-time jobs and the pool of unemployed workers shrinking by 10,600 people to 622,600.

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