Fact sheet

Fact Check: Bill Shorten says everything is going up except your wages. Is he correct?

Publisher
Australian Labor Party Wages Inflation
Description

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten made wage growth promises a key plank of Labor's 2019 federal election strategy. "Everything is going up. Childcare is up 28 per cent. Out of pockets to see the doctor up 20 per cent. Specialists...nearly 40 per cent," he said "You name it, everything is going up except your wages." RMIT ABC Fact Check investigated whether everything is going up except your wages and found Mr Shorten's claim doesn't stack up. The Australian Bureau of Statistics' measure of wages, the wage price index, has not fallen under the Coalition, though it is sluggish. Experts contacted by Fact Check took issue with Mr Shorten's claim, as the wages price index has recently outstripped the bureau's measure of prices, the consumer price index (CPI). Whilst childcare and medical expenses are up in the CPI, other contributors to the index actually fell. This means that real wages ' that is, wages taking into account inflation ' are currently on the rise. The last time they recorded negative growth was the year to March 2017. Experts noted that low wage growth is common in many countries at the moment.
Verdict: Doesn't stack up

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