New Zealand's "rock star economy" is fuelling big job growth as unemployment plummets.

Seek, the job search business, said employment advertisements rose 13 per cent last month compared to January 2013 and people in the provinces were gaining the most ground.

About 24,000 jobs were advertised nationally, up from less than 21,000 last January.

Janet Faulding, Seek's general manager, said smaller regions saw the greatest percentage gains.


Marlborough job ad volumes rose 55 per cent last month, Southland job ads were up 33 per cent and Northland up 30 per cent.

Faulding said seasonal jobs probably boosted these areas.

"The seasonal nature of job opportunities in regional areas definitely has an influence over the increase of positions available. However, this improved activity in the job market is an encouraging indication that the smaller regions in New Zealand are benefiting from the overall increase in economic confidence," Faulding said.

Statistics New Zealand said this month the labour market continued to grow and unemployment fell to 6 per cent. There were 24,000 more people employed in the December 2013 quarter, following an additional 28,000 in the September quarter.

Last year, the number of people employed rose 3 per cent, according to the Household Labour Force Survey. Demand for workers from established businesses rose 1.9 per cent in the Quarterly Employment Survey.

"We're seeing strength across the labour market, particularly in the industries that provide services," industry and labour statistics manager Diane Ramsay said. "The unemployment rate has been falling and employment rising for the last 18 months, with both now at levels last seen in early 2009."

Annual wage inflation remained steady at 1.6 per cent in the December 2013 quarter.

Seek's Faulding indicated Aucklanders were the most favoured when it came to job hunting: 12,000 jobs were advertised in the city in January, 13 per cent up on last January, she said. And if you're an Aucklander with skills in the IT area, you could be in the best position of all.


Faulding said Auckland job ad growth was biggest in the information and communication technology industries.