Continued Low Growth in Average Earnings

The average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time adults in Australia in November 2018 was $1,604.90 (trend), according to new Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures released today.

This was an increase of 1.2 per cent over the last six months and an annual increase of 2.4 per cent.

Bruce Hockman, Chief Economist at the ABS, said: “This latest data points to ongoing low growth in average earnings with the annual increase in line with the Wage Price Index data released yesterday. The growth of 1.2 per cent for the last six months is the same as it was at May 2018.”

“Over the year, average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time adults in the private sector increased by 2.3 per cent and public sector by 2.6 per cent, with the average earnings in the public sector remaining higher than in the private sector.”

Mr Hockman said, that in original terms, the Australian Capital Territory continued to be the state or territory with the highest average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time adults at $1,813.30, while mining remained the leading industry at $2,611.70.

“Meanwhile, Tasmania remained the state or territory with the lowest average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time adults at $1,399.50 while accommodation and food services continued to be the lowest paid industry on average at $1,161.00,” said Mr Hockman.

Percentage movements in average weekly earnings can be affected by changes in both the level of earnings per employee and in the composition of the labour force. Factors which can contribute to compositional change include variations in the proportion of full-time, part-time, casual and junior employees; variations in the occupational distribution within and across industries; and variations in the distribution of employment between industries.

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