11.7% The Real Unemployment Rate: IPA

Written by:
16 July 2020
11.7% The Real Unemployment Rate: IPA - Featured image

Although the official unemployment rate is 7.4%, analysis by free market think tank the Institute of Public Affairs estimates that the real unemployment rate, including those who have on net left the labour force since March and those who are employed but working zero hours for economic reasons, is 11.7%.

“Australia’s tragic unemployment crisis continues with 815,000 jobs being destroyed by the COVID-19 restrictions since March,” said Institute of Public Affairs Research Fellow Kurt Wallace.

“Young Australians have been disproportionately damaged by the COVID-19 restrictions with 335,000 Australians aged 15-24 not in full-time education and out of work in June.”

“Lockdown measures must be eased where it is safe to do so and governments must slash red and green tape, cut taxes, and engage in serious industrial relations reform to get Australians back into work,” said Mr Wallace.

Data on Australia’s unemployment crisis:

  • The official unemployment rate has increased to 7.4%. This is up from 5.2% in March, and 7.1% in May.
  • The IPA’s estimate of the real unemployment rate is 11.7%. This estimate includes those who meet the official definition of unemployed which is those who are out of work but are actively seeking and available to work, plus those who have on net left the labour force since March, plus those who are employed but are working zero hours for economic reasons. This is down from 13.6% last month due to a decline in the number of employed working zero hours and an increase in labour force participation.
  • 355,000 Australians aged 15-24 years who were not in full-time education were also not working in June, the equivalent to 29.6%. This is up from 22.3% in March, but down from 31.2% in May.
  • 815,000 jobs have been lost between March and June, including jobs where the worker worked zero hours for economic reasons. Economic reasons include being stood down or not working due to there being no work or not enough work available.

These unemployment measures have been calculated from ‘6202.0 – Labour Force, Australia, Jun 2020’, released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Thursday.

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