Back To Listing

Unemployment jumps to 11.2% in December (up 1% in a month) – highest since January 1995 (11.3%)

This Roy Morgan survey on Australia’s unemployment and ‘under-employed’* is based on weekly face-to-face interviews of 359,848 Australians aged 14 and over between January 2007 – December 2013 and includes 3,124 to-face interviews in December 2013.

In December 2013 an estimated 1.41 million Australians (11.2% of the workforce) were unemployed – the highest rate of unemployment since January 1995 (11.3%). This is up 143,000 (up 1%) from last month. The Australian workforce* was 12,635,000 (up 181,000) comprising 7,395,000 full-time workers (down 75,000), 3,829,000 part-time workers (up 113,000) and 1,411,000 looking for work (up 143,000) according to the Roy Morgan monthly employment estimates. These figures do not include people who have dropped out of the workforce and given up looking.

Among those who were employed 1,092,000 Australians (8.6% of the workforce*) were under-employed, i.e. working part-time and looking for more work. This is 44,000 less than a month ago (down 0.5%).

In December in total an estimated 2.503 million Australians (19.8% of the workforce) were unemployed or under-employed – the highest ever recorded. This is up 99,000 (up 0.5%) from November and much higher than 12 months ago in December 2012 (up 149,000, 0.6% from 2.354 million).

Of those looking for work an estimated 777,000 Australians (up 77,000) were looking for full-time work, while 634,000 (up 66,000) were looking for part-time work.

The latest Roy Morgan unemployment estimate of 11.2% is a substantial 4.4% more than currently quoted by the ABS for November 2013 (5.8%).

Roy Morgan Unemployed and ‘Under-employed’* Estimate

 

 

 

 

 

 

Unemployed or

‘Under-employed’*

Unemployed

Unemployed looking for

‘Under-employed’*

Full-time

Part-time

2012

‘000

%

‘000

%

‘000

‘000

‘000

%

Jan–Mar 2012

2,143

17.5

1,192

9.7

599

593

951

7.8

Apr–June 2012

2,121

17.4

1,105

9.1

546

559

1,016

8.3

July–Sep 2012

2,120

17.4

1,196

9.8

584

612

924

7.6

Oct–Dec 2012

2,224

18.4

1,182

9.8

569

613

1,042

8.6

2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jan–Mar 2013

2,391

19.2

1,352

10.9

703

649

1,039

8.3

Apr–Jun 2013

2,243

18.1

1,176

9.5

588

587

1,067

8.6

Jul–Sep 2013

2,314

18.5

1,272

10.2

618

654

1,042

8.3

Oct–Dec 2013

2,439

19.5

1,337

10.7

734

603

1,102

8.8

Months

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November 2012

2,222

18.1

1,229

10.0

553

676

993

8.1

December 2012

2,354

19.2

1,176

9.6

586

590

1,178

9.6

January 2013

2,395

19.7

1,327

10.9

744

583

1,068

8.8

February 2013

2,473

19.8

1,360

10.9

649

711

1,113

8.9

March 2013

2,305

18.2

1,369

10.8

715

654

936

7.4

April 2013

2,254

18.1

1,154

9.3

508

646

1,100

8.8

May 2013

2,129

17.3

1,168

9.5

629

539

961

7.8

June 2013

2,346

18.9

1,205

9.7

628

577

1,141

9.2

July 2013

2,398

19.1

1,267

10.1

616

651

1,131

9.0

August 2013

2,257

18.2

1,251

10.1

631

620

1,006

8.1

September 2013

2,286

18.3

1,297

10.4

607

690

989

7.9

October 2013

2,410

19.3

1,333

10.7

726

607

1,077

8.6

November 2013

2,404

19.3

1,268

10.2

700

568

1,136

9.1

December 2013

2,503

19.8

1,411

11.2

777

634

1,092

8.6

*Workforce includes those employed and those looking for work – the unemployed.


Gary Morgan says:

“Australian unemployment has surged to a record high 1.411 million Australians (11.2%, up 1.0%) in December. This is also the highest rate of unemployment in nearly 20 years – since January 1995 (11.3%, 989,000). The rise in unemployment was driven by a large increase in the size of the Australian workforce (12,635,000, up 181,000) – with not enough jobs created in December. Full-time employment dropped to 7,395,000 (down 75,000) – the lowest full-time employment in nearly a year since January 2013 (7,196,000) while the strong rise in part-time employment (3,829,000, up 113,000) wasn’t enough to soak up the new job-seekers entering the workforce.

“The rise in unemployment was partially offset by a fall in under-employment to 1.092 million Australians (8.6%, down 0.5%) meaning a total of 2.503 million Australians (19.8%, up 0.5%) are either unemployed or under-employed – significantly higher than twelve months ago in December 2012 (2.354 million) and clearly a new record high.

“Australia’s high level of unemployment and under-employment should be a huge concern for the Coalition Government which has got off to a slow start in the first few months since winning the Federal Election in early September. Today’s first Morgan Poll for 2014 shows the ALP (52.5%) maintaining a clear lead over the L-NP (47.5%) as we enter the New Year. For the Abbott Government to stand any chance of being re-elected in two years significant labour market reforms must be undertaken to remove red tape introduced under the previous Government which will allow Australian businesses to increase hiring.

“Although it must be noted that unemployment traditionally rises in December (in 16 out of the last 20 years), the large drop in full-time employment is a significant concern as it indicates businesses are hesitant about taking on full-time employees. Although Federal Parliament is not due to resume sitting until mid-February, it is imperative that Treasurer Joe Hockey and Minister for Employment Eric Abetz in particular present Parliament with a clear ‘road-map’ to tackle Australia’s high level of unemployment and under-employment – now above 2 million for two straight years since December 2011.”

This Roy Morgan survey on Australia’s unemployment and ‘under-employed’* is based on weekly face-to-face interviews of 359,848 Australians aged 14 and over between January 2007 – December 2013 and includes 3,124 to-face interviews in December 2013.

*The ‘under-employed’ are those people who are in part-time work or consultants who are looking for more work. (Unfortunately the ABS does not release this figure in their monthly unemployment survey results.)


For further information:

Contact

Office

Mobile

Gary Morgan:     

+61 3 9224 5213  

+61 411 129 094

Michele Levine:       

+61 3 9224 5215  

+61 411 129 093


Unemployment Data Tables

Roy Morgan Research Employment Estimates (2001-2013)

Roy Morgan Research Unemployment & Under-employment Estimates (2007-2013)

Roy Morgan Research vs ABS Employment Estimates (1992-2013)

ABS Employment Estimates (1992-2013)


Roy Morgan December 2013 Unemployment - 11.2%

Roy Morgan December Quarter 2013 Unemployment - 10.7%

Roy Morgan December Unemployment & Under-employment - 19.8%


ROY MORGAN MEASURES REAL UNEMPLOYMENT IN AUSTRALIA

NOT THE ‘PERCEPTION’ OF UNEMPLOYMENT – JUNE 8, 2012

http://www.roymorgan.com/~/media/Files/Papers/2012/20120603.pdf

The Roy Morgan Unemployment estimate is obtained by surveying an Australia-wide cross section by face-to-face interviews. A person is classified as unemployed if they are looking for work, no matter when.

The results are not seasonally adjusted and provide an accurate measure of monthly unemployment estimates in Australia.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics Unemployment estimates are obtained by mostly telephone interviews. Households selected for the ABS Survey are interviewed each month for eight months, with one-eighth of the sample being replaced each month. The first interview is conducted face-to-face. Subsequent interviews are then conducted by telephone.

The ABS classifies a person as unemployed if, when surveyed, they have been actively looking for work in the four weeks up to the end of the reference week and if they were available for work in the reference week.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics Unemployment estimates are also seasonally adjusted.

For these reasons the Australian Bureau of Statistics Unemployment estimates are different from the Roy Morgan Unemployment estimate. Gary Morgan's concerns regarding the ABS Unemployment estimate is clearly outlined in his letter to the Australian Financial Review, which was not published.