Slower increase in average weekly full-time earnings

Media Release

Average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time adults was $1,770 in May 2022, up 1.9 per cent ($33) over the year, according to new seasonally adjusted figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Bjorn Jarvis, head of labour statistics at the ABS, said: “The recent annual increase in full-time earnings of 1.9 per cent was higher than it was last May (1.4 per cent), but lower than in November 2021 (2.1 per cent) and also lower than the 2.6 per cent for the Wage Price Index, released yesterday.”

The latest average earnings data follows a six month period of considerable compositional change in the labour market, with relatively strong average monthly employment growth of around 46,000 people.

“Over the past six months there has been increasing employment, including full-time employment, in some lower paying industries, such as Accommodation and food services, placing some downward influence on changes in average earnings,” said Mr Jarvis.

“May also follows a period of reasonably strong growth in employment for women and for younger workers, who have tended to have lower average full-time earnings.”

Over those six months to May 2022, average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time men rose by 1.4 per cent (to $1,873), which was higher than for women (up 1.1 per cent to $1,609). However, over the year the increase was higher for women (2.1 per cent) than men (2.0 per cent).

“The gap in the headline measure of average weekly full-time earnings for men and women increased slightly from 13.8 per cent in November 2021 to 14.1 per cent in May 2022, although remained below the 14.2 per cent from May 2021,” Mr Jarvis said.

Average weekly ordinary time earnings for full-time workers continued to be highest in the Australian Capital Territory ($1,988) and Western Australia ($1,937) and remained lowest in Tasmania ($1,568) and South Australia ($1,624).

Workers in the Mining industry remained the highest paid on average, at $2,701 per week for full-time workers, followed by those in Information media and telecommunications, at $2,236, and Financial and insurance services ($2,148).

The lowest paid full-time workers on average were in the Accommodation and food services ($1,220) and Retail trade ($1,327) industries.

The release also includes earnings for all employees (full-time and part-time), which showed that average earnings for all male employees increased by 2.0 per cent over the year (to $1,587) and for all female employees by 4.3 per cent (to $1,116).

“Given women are much more likely to work part-time than men, there continues to be a larger gap in earnings for all employees, than for full-time employees, of around 29.7 per cent,” Mr Jarvis said.

The ABS would like to thank businesses in Australia for their continued support in responding to our surveys during these challenging times.

Media notes

  • Percentage movements in average weekly earnings can be affected by changes in both the level of earnings per employee and in the composition of employment. Factors which can contribute to compositional change include variations in the proportion of full-time, part-time, casual and junior employees; variations in the occupational distribution within and across industries; and variations in the distribution of employment between industries.
  • An alternative source for estimates of movements in earnings (wages growth) is the quarterly Wage Price Index (WPI). Unlike AWE, the WPI is designed to measure the change over time in the price of wages and salaries (i.e. a pure price change, unaffected by the changes in the quality or quantity of work performed or the composition of the workforce.)
  • These statistics provide insights into weekly earnings for males and females, including information by industry, sector, and state/territory of work. They are one of the best sources of information for measuring weekly earnings differences between males and females in Australia, and complement a range of other related statistics produced by the ABS (e.g. Employee Earnings and Hours and Characteristics of Employment) and the Workplace Gender Equality Agency.
  • Estimates of percentage change have been calculated using unrounded estimates and may be different from, but are more accurate than, movements obtained from calculating percentage changes using the rounded estimates presented in this publication.
  • Data in this media release refer to seasonally adjusted data for all series excluding industry data, which are original estimates.
  • When reporting ABS data you must attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or the ABS) as the source.
  • For media requests and interviews, contact the ABS Media Team via (8.30am-5pm Mon-Fri).
  • Subscribe to our media release notification service to get notified of ABS media releases or publications upon their release.
Back to top of the page