TOKYO Japan's jobless rate fell slightly in September and the availability of jobs held steady at the highest level in more than five years, government data showed, pointing to steady progress in the battle to end 15 years of deflation.
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 4.0 percent from August's 4.1 percent, figures from the Internal Affairs Ministry showed on Tuesday, matching economists' median forecast of 4.0 percent.
The jobs-to-applicants ratio was 0.95 in September, unchanged from the previous month, when it rose to its highest since May 2008. That compared with the median forecast of 0.96.
The number of new job offers rose 2.7 percent in September from the previous month and rose 9.2 percent from a year ago.
A full table can be seen on the website of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications at:
(Note: The jobs-to-applicants ratio and new job offers can be seen in Japanese on the Labour Ministry's website.)
(Reporting by Stanley White; Editing by Edmund Klamann)