Briefing paper

This briefing note reviews the most recent ABS data regarding employment at the industry level, to search for any correlation between the job-creation performance of various economic sectors and changes in penalty rates for Sunday and holiday work. Detailed quarterly labour force data published by the ABS (Catalogue 6291.0.55.003) provides an industry breakdown of employment trends. The most recent data covers the May quarter of 2019. By comparing employment in that quarter to employment two years earlier (the last quarter before the start of the penalty rate reductions), we can determine whether job-creation in the sectors affected by the FWC’s decisions has been strengthened – either relative to past job-creation, or to the performance of other economic sectors.

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