Government of Western Australia Official Site


WA Economic Profile for March 2017

Main updates this month

Labour market

  • Western Australia’s employment fell by 5,500 to 1.34 million in February 2017.
  • The unemployment rate was 6.0 per cent in February 2017, below the 6.4 per cent in the previous month and equal to a year ago.

Business investment

  • Western Australia contributed 20 per cent of Australia’s business investment in 2016.
  • Nominal business investment fell 27 per cent to $43.0 billion in 2016. It rose 3.0 per cent to $9.7 billion in the December quarter 2016.

Exchange rate

  • The monthly average Australian dollar exchange rate rose 2 per cent to US76.9 cents in February 2017.

Commodity prices

  • In February 2017, the monthly average price of:

o   iron ore rose 11 per cent to US$89.0 a tonne

o   LNG was US$7.5 a million British thermal unit

o   crude oil rose 2 per cent to US$53.4 a barrel

o   gold rose 3.5 per cent to US$1,234 an ounce

  • The Reserve Bank of Australia’s monthly index of rural commodity prices rose 4 per cent in February 2017.


The latest WA Economic Profile will be available on the Department of State Development’s website soon.