Average earnings rose in May as low paid jobs lost

The average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time adults in Australia in May 2020 was $1,714 (seasonally adjusted), up 3.3 per cent from November 2019, according to new Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures released today.

This release shows the compositional impact of COVID-19 restrictions on jobs and earnings.

Bjorn Jarvis, head of Labour Statistics at the ABS, said: “Lower paid jobs and industries were particularly impacted by COVID-19 restrictions, accounting for a high share of jobs lost.

“This fall in lower paid jobs led to an increase in average earnings for all employees because the remaining jobs had a higher earnings profile.

“In recent years, the six-monthly increase in average earnings for all employees has been around 1 per cent. The 3.8 per cent increase to mid-May highlights the extent of the major compositional change in jobs and earnings during this difficult period.”

The increase in average earnings was more pronounced in the private sector, given the extent of lower paid job losses in the sector. However, the level of average earnings in the public sector remained higher.

/ABS Public Release. The material in this public release comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.