Unemployment hits 6.9pc as 30,000 jobs go

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 16-Oct-20

The locked-down Victorian economy shed 36,000 jobs in September, although the state’s unemployment rate is estimated to have fallen by 0.5 percentage points due to a decline in the participation rate. The national unemployment rate increased from 6.8 per cent to 6.9 per cent in September, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ latest estimate. The ABS jobs data does not include people who have given up looking for work. UBS economist George Tharenou suggests that the nation’s real unemployment rate is likely to be around 10 per cent at present.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS, UBS HOLDINGS PTY LTD

ABS August unemployment estimate ignores the 232,000 Australians who have left the workforce since March, 2020

Original article by Michele Levine, Gary Morgan, Julian McCrann
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 18-Sep-20

The ABS unemployment estimate for August 2020 claims 922,000 Australians were unemployed (6.8% of the workforce), a surprise drop of 0.7% points on July 2020. However, the ABS claims 232,000 Australians have left the workforce since March – meaning the participation rate dropped from 66% to 64.8% in August. If the ABS participation rate was steady at 66% there would now be 1.18 million unemployed. In addition, within the ABS employment release is a section indicating 151,800 Australians the ABS counts as employed were working zero hours in August and had ‘no work, not enough work available, or were stood down’. If these non-workers are added the adjusted ABS unemployment estimate is 1.33 million – an unemployment rate of 9.7%. Combined with the ABS under-employment estimate of 1.52 million that would be 2.85 million Australians unemployed or under-employed in August – 20.7% of the Australian workforce. This ‘adjusted’ ABS estimate is close to Roy Morgan’s unemployment & under-employment estimate of 22.8% for August released two weeks ago.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS

AAA rating defies $184b deficit

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 6 : 24-Jul-20

The Australian economy will contract by 2.25 per cent in 2020-21, according to forecasts in the federal government’s economic update. The nation’s official unemployment rate is in turn projected to rise from 7.4 per cent at present to 9.25 per cent by the end of the year. Treasury has also forecast a Budget deficit of $85.5bn for 2019-20, rising to around $184.5bn in 2020-21. Meanwhile, the nation’s gross debt is slated to top $851.9bn in 2020-21. Moody’s and S&P have indicated that the economic update will have no impact on Australia’s triple-A credit rating.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, MOODY’S INVESTORS SERVICE INCORPORATED, S&P GLOBAL RATINGS

Jobless could reach 1.4 million by Christmas

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 7 : 24-Jul-20

The federal government’s economic update shows that the official unemployment rate is forecast to fall to around 8.75 per cent by June 2021. However, the Treasury notes that the measured unemployment rate could be up to 10.75 per cent by December if employers choose to give existing staff extra hours of work rather than hiring additional staff. This would lift the number of people who are unemployed to about 1.4 million. Meanwhile, wages are now expected to grow by just 1.75 per cent in 2019-20 and 1.25 per cent in 2020-21, compared with a forecast of 2.5 per cent growth in the mid-year update in December.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY

Women twice as likely as men to be discouraged workers after Covid-19 job loss

Original article by Paul Karp
The Guardian Australia – Page: Online : 7-Jul-20

A report by the Australian National University has noted an increase in the number of people who are unemployed but not actively looking for work. The report was based on a survey by the ANU Centre for Social Research and Methods, and report co-author Nicholas Biddle says the increase fits in with the notion of the ‘discouraged’ worker, namely someone who would like to work but does not believe there are any suitable jobs available. The ANU found that women who have lost their job because of COVID-19 are much more likely to be ‘discouraged workers’ than men.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL UNIVERSITY

Over 2 million Australians still unemployed in June, down 42,000 on May

Original article by Roy Morgan
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 3-Jul-20

Michele Levine, CEO Roy Morgan, says the unemployment estimate for June shows 2.05 million Australians were unemployed (14.5% of the workforce) and 1.41 million (10.0%) under-employed – a total of 3.45 million Australians (24.5%). The small changes in unemployment and under-employment in June show how much new growth is required to provide jobs for the more than 1 million Australians now unemployed that were working prior to the Australia-wide shut-downs enforced in mid-March. In addition the renewed outbreak of COVID-19 in Melbourne over the last two weeks demonstrates the virus poses an ongoing threat to lives, livelihoods and the economy more broadly.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED

Official ABS May jobless rate out today – will anyone believe figure?

Original article by Adam Creighton
The Australian – Page: 2 : 18-Jun-20

Economist Saul Eslake says the May jobless rate would be nearer 13 per cent if those on JobSeeker and the youth allowance were counted as unemployed. Gary Morgan, the executive chairman of Roy Morgan, who conduct their own unemployment survey, says the headline ABS jobless figure is "phony" and the government needs to revise definitions. He says the current definitions were made up after the Second World War, and things have changed a lot. Morgan notes that there are now far more women and part-time workers in the workforce, and people change jobs more. Record uncertainty about the job market and doubts over the relevance of the ‘official’ ABS unemployment rate have prompted calls for more information on the number of welfare recipients and a rethink of how ‘unemployed’ is defined. ABS forecasts for the May unemployment rate will be released on 18 June.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS, ROY MORGAN LIMITED

Less gloomy Treasury flags faster recovery

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 4 : 10-Jun-20

Treasury secretary Steven Kennedy has told a Senate inquiry that Australia’s unemployment rate is now likely to peak at around eight per cent as the economy begins to re-open and coronavirus lockdown restrictions are eased. The Treasury had previously forecast that the impact of the pandemic would cause the jobless rate to reach 10 per cent by June. Australia’s official unemployment rate is currently 6.2 per cent. Kennedy also said the impact of the pandemic on GDP growth will also not be as severe as initially forecast.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY

2.09 million Australians unemployed in May, down 69,000 on April

Original article by Roy Morgan
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 5-Jun-20

In May 14.8% of the workforce (2.09 million Australians) were unemployed and 9.7% (1.37 million) were under-employed. This is a total of 3.46 million (24.5%) unemployed or under-employed as Australia begins to open up, according to the latest Roy Morgan employment estimates – obviously an under-estimation as 3.5 million are currently subsidised on JobKeeper. Michele Levine, CEO Roy Morgan, says: "Australia has entered its first recession for three decades and a quarter of the Australian workforce is unemployed or under-employed. To emerge from recession quickly businesses and unions must work together to forge sensible and equitable solutions that encourage employers to hire new workers. A Roy Morgan survey this week showed the Federal Court decision to award extra entitlements to certain casual employees will effect up to 794,000 Australian businesses. 567,000 businesses say they will be deterred from hiring casual employees and 123,000 say the decision will ‘force them to close’. This shows if businesses and unions don’t work together hundreds of thousands of Australians will struggle to find new jobs."

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED

ABS April Unemployment estimate doesn’t reflect reality. ABS claims 594,000 lose their jobs but only 104,000 become unemployed (?!?)

Original article by Gary Morgan, Michele Levine, Julian McCrann
Market Research Update – Page: Online : 15-May-20

Yesterday the ABS released its April employment estimates. The ABS estimates that 12,419,000 Australians were employed in April, down 594,000 on March. There were sharp falls for both full-time and part-time employed. The ABS estimate Australian unemployment increased by only 104,000 to 823,000 in April (6.2% of the workforce, up 1%). Australians will be asking, how can the ABS say 594,000 have lost their jobs in April but only 104,000 become unemployed? This is because the ABS claim 490,000 people left the workforce in April. i.e. the ABS claims these people lost their jobs and weren’t then looking for work and available to start work during the reference week. These workers are unemployed – NOT out of the workforce. So the workforce size in April should match the March estimate of 66%. The real ABS unemployment estimate for April is closer to 1.35 million (9.8%) – an increase of 4.6% points. Combined with the estimated ABS under-employment of 1.82 million (13.7%) means a combined unemployment and under-employment of 3.16 million (23.5%). This is much closer to the Roy Morgan April employment estimates showing 2.16 million Australians (15.3%) were unemployed and a total of 3.48 million (24.7%) were either unemployed or under-employed.

CORPORATES
ROY MORGAN LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS