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Unemployment up slightly in January (up 0.1% to 11.3%) – highest since January 1995 (also 11.3%)

This Roy Morgan survey on Australia’s unemployment and ‘under-employed’* is based on weekly face-to-face interviews of 363,632 Australians aged 14 and over between January 2007 – January 2014 and includes 3,784 to-face interviews in January 2014.

In January 2014 an estimated 1.44 million Australians (11.3% of the workforce) were unemployed – the highest rate of unemployment since January 1995 (11.3%). January unemployment is up 29,000 (up 0.1%) from last month and up 113,000 (up 0.4%) compared to the same time last year.

The Australian workforce* was 12,754,000 (up 119,000) comprising 7,715,000 full-time workers (up 320,000) – and a new record high; 3,599,000 part-time workers (down 230,000); and 1,440,000 looking for work (up 29,000) according to the Roy Morgan monthly employment estimates. The Roy Morgan employment and unemployment figures do not include people who have dropped out of the workforce and given up looking.

Among those who were employed 1,105,000 Australians (8.7% of the workforce*) were under-employed, i.e. working part-time and looking for more work. This is 13,000 more than a month ago (up 0.1%).

In January in total an estimated 2.545 million Australians (20.0% of the workforce) were unemployed or under-employed – the highest ever recorded. This is up 42,000 (up 0.2%) from December and much higher than 12 months ago in January 2013 (up 150,000, up 0.3% from 2.395 million).

Of those looking for work an estimated 851,000 Australians (up 74,000) were looking for full-time work – a record high, while 589,000 (down 45,000) were looking for part-time work.

The latest Roy Morgan unemployment estimate of 11.3% is a substantial 5.5% more than currently quoted by the ABS for December 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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

January 2014

2,545

20.0

1,440

11.3

851

589

1,105

8.7

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

Gary Morgan says:

Australian unemployment has increased to a record high 1.440 million Australians (11.3%, up 0.1%) in January. This is the highest rate of unemployment in nearly 20 years – since January 1995 (11.3%, 989,000). The rise in unemployment was driven by a combination of a large increase in the size of the Australian workforce (12,754,000, up 119,000) and not enough jobs being created in January to prevent unemployment rising.

“Although Australian full-time employment surged to a record high 7,715,000 (up 320,000), some 851,000 (up 74,000) Australians are now looking for full-time work – also a record high. Meanwhile, Australian part-time employment dropped to 3,599,000 (down 230,000), and those seeking part-time employment fell to 589,000 (down 45,000).

“These results are not a surprise as full-time employment traditionally surges in January as graduates take up their positions. Full-time employment has increased in 12/13 years since the turn of the century while part-time employment has declined in 9/13 years over the same time period as staff taken on during the pre-Christmas sales period either become full-time employees or are let go.

“However despite this pattern we see every year, Australian unemployment has increased substantially over the last 12 months to now be at a record high 1.440 million (up 113,000 since January 2013). In addition there are now 1.105 million (up 37,000 in a year) under-employed Australians  - a record high total of 2.545 million Australians (20.0%) either unemployed or under-employed.

“Our Federal Parliamentarians are due to finally return to work next week after their Summer break and clearly their number one priority must be reducing the high level of unemployment and under-employment in the Australian economy. The Abbott Government must undertake significant labour market reforms during the next few months, including the removal of red tape introduced under the previous Government, if Australian businesses are going to commence hiring in greater numbers.

“An article in the AFR last week – Holiday costs force shops to close by Marianna Papadakis highlights a great example of why there are so many unemployed and under-employed Australians. Government I.R. regulations – including the absurdly high penalty rates – means that shops close on public holidays because it is uneconomic for them to open. This over-regulation denies employment to the millions of Australians that are looking for work. 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 2.5 million Australians.”

This Roy Morgan survey on Australia’s unemployment and ‘under-employed’* is based on weekly face-to-face interviews of 363,632 Australians aged 14 and over between January 2007 – January 2014 and includes 3,784 to-face interviews in January 2014.

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 (2001-2014)

Roy Morgan Research Unemployment & Under-employment Estimates (2007-2014)

Roy Morgan Research vs ABS Employment Estimates (1992-2014)

ABS Employment Estimates (1992-2014)


Roy Morgan Monthly Unemployment - January 2014 - 11.3%

Roy Morgan Quarterly Unemployment - December Quarter 2013

Roy Morgan Monthly Under-employment - January 2014


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.