New positive Covid-19 cases in New South Wales and Victoria have prompted increased testing and tracing to prevent further outbreaks. As Australia prepares for its vaccine rollout, the federal government reaffirmed its confidence in the AstraZeneca vaccine. Oxford University said work was underway to develop a new generation of vaccines that will protect against emerging variants of the virus.
Meanwhile Australia’s recovery continues and has been most evident in the labour market. The unemployment rate fell from 6.8% to 6.6% in December, lower than the 6.7% expected, as the recovery in the labour market continued to outperform expectations.