There are increasing signs the Australian economy has turned the corner with more evidence the Reserve Bank may not have to cut interest rates again this year.
The bank is expected to leave rates on hold at 3 per cent today after key indicators for jobs and the property sector showed positives.
ANZ's measure of job advertisements improved 3 per cent last month, the second successive monthly improvement after almost two years of falls. Newspaper advertisements fell but internet advertisements rallied.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported a 2.4 per cent fall in building approvals but a 9.1 per cent fall in the volatile units and apartments sector drove this.
Home approvals rose 3.2 per cent, the best monthly performance in almost a year.
There were 2025 building approvals in WA in January, the strongest reading since April 2010.
ANZ's head of Australian economics, Ivan Colhoun, said the jobs market was delicately poised.
He said the recent rise in job adverts suggested the employment market was stabilising, but noted that signs of a recovery early last year had not lasted, with demand for workers falling over the year.
Troubles in the global economy in the second half were evident in the ABS measure of business indicators. Overall, company profits slumped one per cent, the fifth consecutive quarterly decline.
The impact of last year's fall in commodity prices on mining companies and the Federal Budget was clear in the figures.
Mining companies in the second half of 2011 reported gross operating profits of $51 billion. Through the second half of last year, mining profits fell to $36.5 billion.
The figures and a smaller than expected increase in inventories will detract from tomorrow's December quarter GDP result.
However, analysts believe the December quarter is likely to be the low point for the economy with job and building approval figures pointing towards an improvement early this year.
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