Members of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (Rics) have downgraded their outlook for UK property sales in the year ahead.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show unemployment stood at 139,000, although it was down 12,000 over the year.
Pearson chief executive John Fallon is under mounting pressure as investors in the education giant backed its board to oust him if necessary in the wake of a profit warning that sent the shares plunging to their lowest level in 14 years.
Shares post healthy gains at the open, led up by a rallies in CSL and Bega Cheese, while the Aussie dollar hits reverse after Fed chief Janet Yellen flagged "a few" rate hikes a year until 2019.
'It's about highlighting the lie that was told to millions of people in this country, the lie that Trump was draining the swamp.