Wages rise 0.6% in the September quarter 2018

The seasonally adjusted Wage Price Index (WPI) rose 0.6 per cent in September quarter 2018 and 2.3 per cent through the year, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

ABS Chief Economist Bruce Hockman said seasonally adjusted, private sector wages rose 2.1 per cent and public sector wages grew 2.5 per cent, through the year to September quarter 2018.

“There was a higher rate of wage growth recorded across the majority of industries in comparison to this time last year, reflecting the influence of improved labour market conditions,” Mr Hockman said. “Annual wage growth at the Australia level was 2.3%, the highest growth rate since September quarter 2015.”

In original terms, annual growth to the September quarter 2018 ranged from 1.8 per cent for the Mining and Retail trade industries to 2.8 per cent for the Health care and social assistance industry.

Western Australia recorded the lowest through the year wage growth of 1.8 per cent while Tasmania recorded the highest of 2.6 per cent.

The ABS also released today a feature article that extends previous research looking at the factors underpinning wage growth. The article, Update on the Size and Frequency of Wage Changes, uses job-level micro data and shows that over the last two years the average frequency of wage changes has increased while the average size of wage rises has remained broadly stable.

This work is the result of collaboration between the ABS and the Reserve Bank of Australia.

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