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Tourism Satellite Accounts: quarterly tourism labour statistics, Australia, experimental estimates

Experimental estimates of quarterly tourism employment and jobs to help explain the impacts of COVID-19 on tourism activity.

Reference period
December 2020
Released
19/03/2021

Key statistics

In December, there were 664,400 tourism jobs: This is

  • 32,300 (5.1%) more jobs than September 2020
  • 80,500 (-10.8%) less jobs than December 2019
  • a recovery of 4 out of 10 tourism jobs compared to 7 out of 10 economy-wide jobs 
  • driven by an uneven mix of movement across tourism industries

Overview

Filled jobs

All references to "jobs" are referring to "filled jobs" unless otherwise specified. For information on the various measures of jobs (filled job, Labour Account main job and Labour Account secondary job), please refer to the Glossary in Methodology.

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Change in number and percentage of jobs, original series
 Sep-19 to Dec-19Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-19 to Dec-20 (a)
Tourism18000
(2.5%)
-47300
(-6.3%)
-91200
(-13.1%)
25700
(4.2%)
32300
(5.1%)
-80500
(-10.8%)
Whole economy200500
(1.4%)
-119100
(-0.8%)
-861800
(-6.0%)
225900
(1.7%)
461700
(3.3%)
-293300
(-2.0%)

 (a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year

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Key COVID-19 dates

  • January–March: Bushfires heavily impacted various regions across Australia. States of emergency were declared across New South Wales, Victoria and the Australian Capital Territory
  • 20 March: Australia's international borders closed to all non-citizens and non-residents
  • 21 March: Domestic travel restrictions began. Tasmania first state to require people entering to self-isolate for 14 days from arrival
  • 22 March: Prime Minister announced Stage 2 lock down changes, which were progressively implemented
  • 30 March: Prime Minister announced JobKeeper program
  • First week of May: JobKeeper payment from ATO commenced
  • Mid-May: Initial progressive easing of social distancing and trading restrictions commenced
  • July-August: Progressive stage 3 and 4 restrictions commenced for different parts of Victoria
  • July-September: State border restrictions frequently reviewed and progressively updated (tightened/relaxed)
  • 28 September: JobKeeper extension (with modified eligibility test) commences
  • October: Restrictions in Victoria progressively eased
  • November-December: Alternation between re-impositions and easing of restrictions for various local government areas affected by local outbreaks in South Australia and New South Wales, and closing and reopening of various State and Territory borders
     

Tourism industry

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by industry, original series

 

Sep-19 to Dec-19Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-19 to Dec-20 (a)
Accommodation 2300
(2.5%)
-12200
(-13.2%)
-15000
(-18.7%)
600
(0.9%)
5500
(8.3%)
-21100
(-22.8%)
Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services 7400
(3.3%)
-16500
(-7.1%)
-36300
(-16.8%)
21200
(11.8%)
7900
(3.9%)
-23700
(-10.2%)
Clubs, pubs, taverns and bars2700
(4.9%)
-4300
(-7.4%)
-5700
(-10.6%)
1400
(2.9%)
2700
(5.5%)
-5900
(-10.2%)
Rail transport -100
(-4.3%)
100
(4.5%)
0
(0.0%)
-200
(-8.7%)
0
(0.0%)
-100
(-4.5%)
Road transport and transport equipment rental-1400
(-4.6%)
100
(0.3%)
-1900
(-6.6%)
1400
(5.2%)
1700
(6.0%)
1300
(4.5%)
Air, water and other transport 1600
(3.9%)
-3000
(-7.1)
-6900
(-17.6%)
-6900
(-21.3%)
-500
(-2.0%)
-17300
(-40.9%)
Travel agency and information centre services-1300
(-3.5%)
-1300
(-3.6%)
-3800
(-10.9%)
2100
(6.7%)
2000
(6.0%)
-1000
(-2.8%)
Cultural services 1100
(9.5%)
-1100
(-8.7%)
-2700
(-23.3%)
700
(7.9%)
-100
(-1.0%)
-3200
(-25.2%)
Casinos and other gambling services 100
(2.6%)
-200
(-5.0%)
-300
(-7.9%)
-100
(-2.9%)
100
(2.9%)
-500
(-12.5%)
Sports and recreation services900
(3.1%)
-5400
(-17.9%)
-6300
(-25.5%)
3800
(20.7%)
4300
(19.4%)
-3600
(-12.0%)
Retail trade 5000
(4.4%)
-1900
(-1.6%)
-3400
(-2.9%)
2200
(1.9%)
6300
(5.5%)
3200
(2.7%)
Education and training -300
(-0.5%)
-1800
(-2.9%)
-7700
(-12.7%)
-700
(-1.3%)
1800
(3.5%)
-8400
(-13.5%)
All other industries300
(1.2%)
200
(0.8%)
-1300
(-5.2%)
300
(1.3%)
600
(2.5%)
-200
(-0.8%)
Tourism total (b)18000
(2.5%)
-47300
(-6.3%)
-91200
(-13.1%)
25700
(4.2%)
32300
(5.1%)
-80500
(-10.8%)

(a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year
(b) Totals may not add due to rounding 

During this quarter, industries with the largest quarterly change in number of jobs were:

  • cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services: 7,900 jobs (3.9%)
  • retail trade: 6,300 jobs (5.5%)
  • accommodation: 5,500 jobs (8.3%)


Comparing December 2019 with 2020, industries with the largest change in number of jobs were:

  • cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services: -23,700 jobs (-10.2%)
  • accommodation: -21,100 jobs (-22.8%) 
  • air, water and other transport: -17,300 jobs (-40.9%)
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Employment status

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This is the second consecutive quarter where part-time jobs exceed full-time jobs.

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by status, original series
 Sep-19 to Dec-19Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-19 to Dec-20 (a)
Full-time13900
(3.8%)
-20700
(-5.4%)
-28700
(-8.0%)
-20500
(-6.2%)
13300
(4.3%)
-56600
(-14.8%)
Part-time4100
(1.1%)
-26500
(-7.3%)
-62600
(-18.6%)
46200
(16.8%)
19000
(5.9%)
-23900
(-6.6%)

  (a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year

During this quarter:

  • part-time jobs increased by 19,000 (5.9%) jobs; this change is more than full-time which increased by 13,300 (4.3%) jobs 

 

Between December quarter 2019 to 2020:

  • there were 56,600 (-14.8%) less full-time jobs; this change is larger than part-time which has 23,900 (-6.6%) less jobs

Sex

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by sex, original series
 Sep-19 to Dec-19Dec-19 to Mar-20Mar-20 to Jun-20Jun-20 to Sep-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-19 to Dec-20 (a)
Male7300
(2.2%)
-17900
(-5.3%)
-29600
(-9.3%)
6600
(2.3%)
17600
(6.0%)
-23300
(-6.9%)
Female10900
(2.7%)
-29500
(-7.2%)
-61600
(-16.2%)
19200
(6.0%)
14600
(4.3%)
-57300
(-14.0%)

 (a) Change on preceding quarter, except for the last column which shows the change on corresponding quarter of the previous year

During this quarter:

  • jobs worked by males increased by 17,600 (6.0%) jobs; this change is more than females which increased by 14,600 (4.3%) jobs

 

Between December quarter 2019 to 2020:

  • there were 57,300 (-14.0%) less jobs worked by females; this change is larger than males who have 23,300 (-6.9%) less jobs
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Sex by employment status

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Change in number and percentage of jobs by sex by employment status
 MaleFemale
 Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-19 to Dec-20Sep-20 to Dec-20Dec-19 to Dec-20
Full-time8000
(5.4%)
-17800
(-10.2%)
5300
(3.3%)
-38900
(-18.9%)
Part-time9600
(6.6%)
-5500
(-3.4%)
9300
(5.3%)
-18400
(-9.1%)

During this quarter:

  • part-time male jobs has the largest quarterly increase of 9,600 (6.6%) jobs
  • full-time female jobs has the smallest quarterly increase of 5,300 (3.3%) jobs

 

From December quarter 2019 to 2020:

  • full-time female jobs has the largest yearly change of 38,900 (-18.9%) job losses
  • part-time male jobs has the smallest yearly change of 5,500 (-3.4%) job losses

Measuring the impacts of bushfires and COVID-19 on tourism activity

The bushfires followed immediately by the COVID-19 pandemic had an unprecedented impact on the Australian economy with tourism particularly affected. This section looks at how tourism has been impacted over the period by comparing estimates of tourism jobs at the end of December 2019 with those in the current quarter.

  • Tourism jobs peaked at 744,900 in December 2019, then fell to the lowest level (606,400) since June 2013 in June 2020, and increased to 664,400 this quarter
  • This represents 10.8% (-80,500) less tourism jobs, compared to 2.0% (-293,300) less jobs in the whole economy as at December 2020
  • This represents a 41.9% recovery of the tourism jobs lost between the peak and the trough jobs estimate since these events
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Related release

Australian National Accounts: Tourism Satellite Account (previously used cat. no. 5249.0)

The 2019-20 issue of Australian National Accounts: Tourism Satellite Account was released on 10 December 2020. Users are reminded that the estimates in this quarterly release are based on a different data source and are not directly comparable to the estimates provided in the annual tourism satellite account publication. For more information on the strengths and differences between the two employment measures, please refer to the article published in March quarter 2020.

Feedback

This TSA publication contains experimental estimates of quarterly tourism labour statistics. The ABS welcomes comments and suggestions from users regarding this release. If you are interested in contributing, please contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070, or email client.services@abs.gov.au.

Data downloads

Data files

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 5249.0.55.005.