The Australian Labour Market in 2021

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This article provides a review of the Australian labour market in 2021. It describes patterns of employment, unemployment and other key labour market outcomes in the year, including wages. In the year to September 2021, total employment increased by 2.6% for males and 2.2% for females, driven by a growth in full-time employment. While most labour market indicators returned to their pre-pandemic levels in 2021, young adults, particular men, casual employees and the self-employed were most disadvantaged by COVID-19. New South Wales and Victorian residents were similarly adversely affected.
Notwithstanding inflationary fears, in the year to September 2021, headline inflation increased by 3.0% and the wage price index by 2.2%, rendering a fall in real wages during the year. Despite record low unemployment at year’s end and a positive economic outlook for 2022, the future remains unclear.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)327-346
Number of pages20
JournalThe Journal of Industrial Relations
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 16 Jun 2022


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