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2.3 million Australians unemployed or under-employed in April

This Roy Morgan survey on Australia’s unemployment and ‘under-employed’* is based on weekly face-to-face interviews of 531,252 Australians aged 14 and over between January 2007 – April 2017 and includes 5,392 face-to-face interviews in April 2017.
Australia’s real unemployment for April was unchanged at 9.3% (1.217 million Australians looking for work). In addition, for the eighth straight month more than 1 million Australians were under-employed in April – now 1.090 million (8.3% of the workforce). This is a total of 2.307 million Australians (17.6% of the workforce) looking for work or looking for more work.

  • In April the total Australian workforce was 13,133,000 (up 323,000 in a year) and employment grew strongly to 11,916,000 (up 440,000);

  • However the increase in employment was entirely driven by a large increase in part-time employment which rose 471,000 to 4,300,000 while full-time employment fell 31,000 to 7,616,000;

  • So while real unemployment at 9.3% is down 1.1% from a year ago, under-employment is up 0.6% to 8.3% over the same period. The rise in under-employment is a direct consequence of the increasing proportion of part-time employment at the expense of full-time jobs;

  • The Roy Morgan real unemployment figures are substantially higher than the current ABS estimate for March 2017 (5.9%).

Roy Morgan Monthly Unemployment & Under-employment - April 2017 - 17.6%
Source: Roy Morgan Single Source October 2005 – April 2017. Average monthly interviews 4,000.

 

Gary Morgan, Executive Chairman, Roy Morgan Research, says real unemployment at 9.3% is far higher than the ABS claims – and there are an additional 1 million+ under-employed Australians:

“Australia’s real unemployment rate of 9.3% (1.217 million Australians) in April is far higher than the 5.9% claimed by the ABS as Treasurer Scott Morrison prepares to deliver the first Federal Budget of the re-elected Turnbull Government this week.

“In addition – a further 1.090 million Australians are under-employed (8.3% of the workforce), and regularly ignored by both the major political parties and the mainstream media.

“For the first time last week Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull met new US President Donald Trump who was clear during his campaign that the real American unemployment rate was 20% or 25% rather than the official Bureau of Labor Statistics figure below 5%.

“Turnbull and his Ministers in Australia need to understand the issues are the same in Australia and the Turnbull Government must follow Trump’s lead by implementing policies to bring back jobs to Australia. The decision to scrap 457 visas in addition to the Fair Work Commission’s decision to reduce weekend and public holiday penalty rates are small steps in the right direction that must be built on.

“The 440,000 new jobs created over the past year show the Australian economy is growing but excessive regulations and red tape, combined with high corporate tax rates, are holding back the economy from providing full-time jobs, and additional hours, to the Australians that need them.”

This Roy Morgan survey on Australia’s unemployment and ‘under-employed’* is based on weekly face-to-face interviews of 531,252 Australians aged 14 and over between January 2007 – April 2017 and includes 5,392 face-to-face interviews in April 2017.

*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).


Roy Morgan Unemployed and ‘Under-employed’* Estimates

Unemployed or

‘Under-employed’*

Unemployed

Unemployed looking for

‘Under-employed’*

Full-time

Part-time

2016

Jan-Mar 2016

2,496

19.1

1,362

10.4

639

723

1,134

8.7

Apr-Jun 2016

2,322

18.1

1,317

10.2

637

680

1,005

7.8

Jul-Sep 2016

2,296

17.8

1,266

9.8

574

692

1,030

8.0

Oct-Dec 2016

2,446

18.9

1,191

9.2

635

556

1,255

9.7

2017

Jan-Mar 2017

2,377

17.9

1,261

9.5

591

670

1,116

8.4

Months

March 2016

2,433

18.8

1,422

11.0

631

791

1,011

7.8

April 2016

2,322

18.1

1,334

10.4

611

723

988

7.7

May 2016

2,316

18.1

1,369

10.7

661

708

947

7.4

June 2016

2,326

17.9

1,247

9.6

637

610

1,079

8.3

July 2016

2,536

19.5

1,365

10.5

645

720

1,171

9.0

August 2016

2,249

17.5

1,332

10.4

544

788

917

7.1

September 2016

2,103

16.2

1,101

8.5

532

569

1,002

7.7

October 2016

2,454

19.1

1,188

9.2

626

562

1,266

9.9

November 2016

2,299

17.6

1,199

9.2

629

570

1,100

8.4

December 2016

2,584

20.0

1,186

9.2

650

536

1,398

10.8

January 2017

2,402

17.9

1,295

9.7

634

661

1,107

8.2

February 2017

2,390

17.9

1,253

9.4

576

677

1,137

8.5

March 2017

2,340

17.7

1,236

9.3

563

673

1,104

8.4

April 2017

2,307

17.6

1,217

9.3

612

605

1,090

8.3


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


For further information

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Gary Morgan:     

+61 3 9224 5213  

+61 411 129 094

Michele Levine:       

+61 3 9224 5215  

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Unemployment Data Tables

Roy Morgan Research Employment Estimates (2001-2017)

Roy Morgan Research Unemployment & Under-employment Estimates (2007-2017)

Roy Morgan Research vs ABS Employment Estimates (1992-2017)

ABS Employment Estimates (1992-2017)

Roy Morgan Monthly Unemployment Estimate - April 2017 - 9.3%

Roy Morgan Quarterly Unemployment - March Quarter 2017 - 9.5%


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.


Margin of Error

The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. The following table gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. The figures are approximate and for general guidance only, and assume a simple random sample. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.

Sample Size

% Estimate

 

40%-60%

25% or 75%

10% or 90%

5% or 95%

5,000

±1.4

±1.2

±0.8

±0.6

10,000

±1.0

±0.9

±0.6

±0.4

20,000

±0.7

±0.6

±0.4

±0.3

50,000

±0.4

±0.4

±0.3

±0.2