Former Queensland Labor Senator and Executive Chairman of Education Geographics John Black has a great article on his website arguing We told you so…JobMaker misses the real target. Recall that JobMaker is the federal government’s hiring credit for newly engaged workers aged up to 35 who were previously receiving a government benefit payment. Regarding the latest ABS payroll jobs data released yesterday, John writes:
Today’s ABS Single Touch Payroll data confirms that JobMaker has come too late to help younger workers displaced by Covid job lockdowns and it is now missing the real target – older workers in retirement and tourist regions.
Outside of Victoria, Australia’s younger workers are already a lot better off than their parents, when it comes to jobs lost due to Covid lockdowns.
The Jobs Index numbers from today’s ABS release (below) shows workers aged 20-29 years are well ahead of their parents’ generation in the mainland states, with the exception of Victoria.
This is because younger workers tend to lose their more casual jobs in food and retail first during downturns, but then typically lead the recovery. This means, as a policy response, that JobMaker has come about four months too late for all Australian states except Victoria, which was held back by its second wave.
John’s analysis of the data is excellent. Check out my chart below of the percentage changes in jobs on payrolls as reported to the ATO since mid-March, just before all the restrictions began. Note that the big pick up in employment of under 20 year olds since mid-March is likely related to the ordinary pattern of school/VET leavers from the previous year taking up new jobs through the year. These data aren’t seasonally adjusted which is one thing you need to consider when interpreting them.
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