Should we increase Youth Wages?

The Shop Distributive & Allied Employees Association has a television advertisement out at the moment. It features a young girl, Rachel, bemoaning youth rates of pay and urging us to join her in the “fight for fair pay”. Rachel tells us she works hard to pay her way through university and it is just not fair that she does not get paid more. Perhaps a persuasive emotional tale on its own, but it is a misleading one that completely ignores empiricism. Read more

Unions Won’t Let Rudd Change The Rules

Ken Phillips, a member of the HR Nicholls Society Board of Management, has a piece in today’s Australian (paywall protected) on how the Unions won’t let Kevin Rudd changes Labor’s Leadership rules:

ANYONE who thinks that Kevin Rudd can change the ALP’s leadership selection rules is ignoring the history of Rudd in his first term as prime minister. Ultimately, unions won’t allow him to make the change. What they will allow is the impression of Rudd being a strong leader as a political ploy for the election campaign. After the election they’ll predictably knife him again. Read more

True Unemployment Double Official Figure

The Daily Telegraph:

REAL unemployment is double the official figure – with 13 per cent of Australia’s workforce wanting a job or longer hours.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) yesterday released a new analysis that combines the official unemployment rate with “discouraged” jobseekers, the “underemployed” and those who want to start work within a month, but cannot begin immediately.

The 13.1 per cent rate of “extended labour force under-utilisation” in August 2012 was more than double the official unemployment rate at the time of 5 per cent.

The ABS counts people as employed even if they only work an hour a week.

But the new measure also counts underemployment – workers in part-time or casual positions who want a permanent job or longer hours.

And it includes those “discouraged” jobseekers who want to work but have given up looking because employers consider them to be too old or too young, if they are ill or disabled, lack the necessary training or experience, cannot find a job locally or in their line of work, or cannot speak English well.