Highest minimum wage rate to hurt recovery

Original article by Adam Creighton
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 27-Jul-20

Data from the OECD shows that Australia has the world’s highest minimum wage, at $12.60 per hour when measured in purchasing-power adjusted US dollars. Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox says the data refutes arguments that the nation’s minimum wage is too low; he warns that its high level will ensure that younger people and those with limited skills will face longer periods of unemployment and underemployment. Willox adds that the minimum wage has increased by 8.5 per cent since 2017, with the Fair Work Commission approving a 1.75 per cent rise in June.

CORPORATES
ORGANISATION FOR ECONOMIC CO-OPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Wage rise an assault on small business

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Weekend Australian – Page: 3 : 20-Jun-20

Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry CEO James Pearson has criticised the decision to increase the minimum wage at a time when the economy and the labour market have been hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox warns that the minimum wage rise of 1.75 per cent will affect hiring intentions at a time when unemployment and underemployment have increased sharply. Professor Mark Wooden is the only member of the Fair Work Commission’s wage panel to have pushed for the minimum wage to be frozen for 12 months.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Survivor firms can pay $30 rise: ACTU

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 5 : 11-Jun-20

The Fair Work Commission will shortly hand down its decision on a minimum wage increase. The ACTU is pushing for a four per cent increase in the minimum wage, which equates to $30 a week. Trevor Clarke of the ACTU has told the FWC that businesses which are still operating as the economy emerges from the pandemic have the capacity to absorb this increase, as the demise of rivals means they have less competition. Employer groups contend that the economy is yet to feel the full impact of the coronavirus.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, ACTU

Unions reject calls to halt wage increase

Original article by Greg Brown
The Australian – Page: 6 : 1-Jun-20

The Australian Industry Group is against any increase in the minimum wage in 2020, with CEO Innes Willox noting it is the first time in 30 years that it has completely opposed a rise. Willox says increasing the minimum wage is not in anyone’s interest, and if the Fair Work Commission does decide to do so it should be delayed until January 2021. Unions are seeking a $30-per-week increase in the minimum wage, while the Shop, Distributive & ­Allied Employees’ Association states that there should be a freeze on planned cuts to penalty rates if the FWC does not award an increase in the minimum wage.

CORPORATES
THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, SHOP, DISTRIBUTIVE AND ALLIED EMPLOYEES’ ASSOCIATION

Pandemic pain to hit wage rises

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 15-May-20

Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry CEO James Pearson says the latest jobs data underlines the need for the minimum wage to remain unchanged in 2020. He warns that an increase in the minimum wage would jeopardise more jobs. Fair Work Commission president Ian Ross has flagged the possibility that a minimum wage rise could be delayed for companies that are receiving the JobKeeper wage subsidy. However, the ACTU opposes any delay; it is pushing for a minimum wage rise of four per cent, or $30 a week.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, ACTU

ACTU wage bid ‘damaging’, puts recovery at risk

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 6-May-20

The ACTU has called for the minimum wage to be increased by four per cent in 2020, or $30 a week. Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter has warned that the ACTU’s wage claim could jeopardise Australia’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. The Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry contends that it would increase the financial strain on businesses that are already battling during the crisis.

CORPORATES
ACTU, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS, AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY

Call to delay minimum wage rise

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 5 : 17-Mar-20

The Australian Industry Group has not made a recommendation on an increase in the minimum wage in its submission to the Fair Work Commission. It has cited the uncertain outlook for the economy by 1 July, when any rise in the minimum wage is slated to take effect. Ai Group has also urged a delay in any such increase until 15 July; it argues that the FWC should hold off on finalising its wage review until after the release of national accounts data on 3 July. Ai Group CEO Innes Willox has warned that every segment of the economy will be affected by the coronavirus.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP

Bosses call for wages freeze, or jobs will go

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 5 : 16-Mar-20

Master Grocers Australia has urged the Fair Work Commission to freeze award pay rates in the retail sector for 12 months in response to the coronavirus pandemic. The MGA warns in its submission to the FWC’s annual review of the minimum wage that the impact of the coronavirus is likely to be felt for at least a year, so it is not an appropriate time to be increasing award wages. The MGA also contends that a small increase in the minimum wage may be justified, but not the three per cent rise in 2019. Most workers employed by MGA members are paid minimum award rates.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, MASTER GROCERS’ AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Minimum wage world’s highest

Original article by Rachel Baxendale
The Weekend Australian – Page: 2 : 13-Jul-19

Australia’s minimum wage was increased by 3.5 per cent in 2018, with the increase giving Australia the highest minimum wage in the world when adjusted for inflation and purchasing power. This is according to recent OECD figures, which do not take into account the latest three per cent increase in the minimum wage. Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox says the OECD figures rebut union claims that the minimum wage system needs to be overhauled, although an ACTU spokesperson contends that it is a "basic principle of fairness" that no one who works full-time should be living in poverty.

CORPORATES
THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, ACTU, ORGANISATION FOR ECONOMIC CO-OPERATION AND DEVELOPMENT

Signs that wage rise pick-up is under way

Original article by Matthew Cranston, David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 10-Jul-19

A number of large Australian companies have struck new enterprise agreements which include pay rises that are higher than the current level of wage growth. Some employers in sectors such as retailing and fast food are seeking to increase wages in line with the latest increase in the minimum wage. Meanwhile, Andrew Hanson of recruitment firm Robert Walters says the outlook for the economy and business conditions during the first half of 2019-20 means that more highly-skilled employees are unlikely to receive a significant pay rise.

CORPORATES
ROBERT WALTERS PTY LTD, McDONALD’S AUSTRALIA LIMITED, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, HUNGRY JACK’S PTY LTD, BIG W DISCOUNT STORES, KMART AUSTRALIA LIMITED, SUPER RETAIL GROUP LIMITED – ASX SUL, BWS – BEER WINE SPIRITS, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, JP MORGAN AUSTRALIA LIMITED