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November 17, 2020


 The latest ABS figures released today confirm that hundreds of thousands of jobs have been lost since the virus outbreak.
For many Australians, what looks like a recovery on paper will continue to feel like a recession.
Any increase in jobs is welcome, and it was good to see some jobs return particularly in Victoria as restrictions were eased.
Instead of building on Australians’ success, Scott Morrison’s decision to prematurely cut JobKeeper and JobSeeker support out of the economy is jeopardising the recovery and means unemployment will be higher for longer.
330,000 jobs have been lost since the virus outbreak began and 160,000 more Australians are expected to join the unemployment queues by Christmas.
The latest ABS Payroll Jobs and Wages data shows that since the beginning of the crisis:  

  • Payroll jobs have fallen by 3.0 per cent and wages are down by 4.3 per cent;
  • The biggest job losses have been in sectors heavily impacted by JobKeeper exclusions, including hospitality and the arts; and
  • Older workers have been disproportionately hit by job losses.

These latest jobs figures come as the Reserve Bank said it had become “increasingly clear that an extended period of high unemployment was in prospect”.
The Prime Minister has been slow to act during this crisis, and his Government’s deliberate decisions to exclude Australians from support means the only lasting legacies of this crisis could be higher unemployment for longer and a trillion dollars of debt.