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Weekly Payroll Jobs and Wages in Australia

Payroll jobs and wages estimates, sourced from Single Touch Payroll (STP) data

Reference period
Week ending 27 March 2021
Released
13/04/2021

Key statistics

Between the weeks ending 13 and 27 March 2021, payroll jobs increased 0.1%. The largest changes were in:

  • Queensland (up 0.3%) and the Australian Capital Territory (down 0.3%)
  • Accommodation and food services (up 1.7%)

Total wages decreased by 0.4%. The largest changes were in:

  • Northern Territory (down 2.1%)
  • Mining (down 5.9%)

Jobholder characteristics updated

Jobholder age, sex and geography (including sub-state region) have been updated in this release, resulting in revisions across the time series. For more information, see the Update of jobholder characteristics section of Methods review

The ABS recommends that analyses of previously published estimates be refreshed with the data from this release.

National

Between the weeks ending 14 March 2020 and 27 March 2021:

  • Payroll jobs increased by 1.0%
  • Total wages increased by 2.1%

Between the weeks ending 13 and 27 March 2021:

  • Payroll jobs increased by 0.1%, compared to an increase of 0.6% in the previous fortnight
  • Total wages paid decreased by 0.4%, compared to an increase of 0.3% in the previous fortnight
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  1. Care should be exercised when focusing on the most recent movements in payroll jobs and wages. For more information, please see Data limitations and revisions. Weekly change data are available in the Data downloads.

State and territory

Since the week ending 14 March 2020 the largest changes across states and territories were:

Payroll jobs:

  • Western Australia increased by 3.2%
  • Northern Territory increased by 3.0%

Total wages:

  • South Australia increased by 4.2%
  • Victoria increased by 3.6%

 

Between the weeks ending 13 and 27 March 2021 the largest changes were:

Payroll jobs:

  • Queensland increased by 0.3%
  • the Australian Capital Territory decreased by 0.3%

Total wages:

  • Northern Territory decreased by 2.1%
  • Western Australia decreased by 1.6%
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Table 1 - Percentage change by states and territories
 Payroll jobs Total wages 
 Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021
New South Wales-0.1%0.4%0.0%1.1%
Victoria0.1%0.6%0.0%3.6%
Queensland0.3%0.5%-1.2%1.4%
South Australia0.2%2.7%0.1%4.2%
Western Australia0.2%3.2%-1.6%2.0%
Tasmania0.0%0.3%-0.3%1.5%
Northern Territory0.0%3.0%-2.1%2.3%
Australian Capital Territory-0.3%0.3%0.0%1.9%
Australia0.1%1.0%-0.4%2.1%

a. Care should be exercised when focusing on the most recent movements in payroll jobs and wages. For more information, please see Data limitations and revisions. Weekly change data are available in Data downloads.
 

Sub-state - payroll jobs

Updated estimates of payroll jobs by sub-state regions were added to this release on Wednesday 14 April 2021. 

Time series estimates of payroll jobs by sub-state regions, Statistical Area 4 (SA4) and Statistical Area 3 (SA3), are presented as index values through to the week ending 27 March 2021 in Table 5 of the Data downloads. These estimates are only updated in alternate releases. 

 

SA4 regions

SA4 regions are specifically designed to reflect labour markets within each state and territory within population limits. In regional areas, SA4s tend to have lower populations (100,000 to 300,000), while in metropolitan areas, SA4s tend to have larger populations (300,000 to 500,000).

SA3 regions

SA3 regions generally have populations between 30,000 and 130,000 persons. They are often the functional areas of regional towns and cities with a population in excess of 20,000, or clusters of related suburbs around urban commercial and transport hubs within the major urban areas.

Interactive maps

The interactive maps were updated to the week ending 27 March 2021, as part of this release on Friday 16 April 2021. 

End of interactive map updates

The interactive maps will not be updated after this release, while the ABS reviews the best presentation of geospatial data associated with this release. 

The source data for the interactive maps will continue to be available in Table 5 of the Data downloads.

Interactive maps of SA4 and SA3 regions present change in payroll jobs from the week ending 14 March 2020 for each week up to the week ending 27 March 2021. This release contains the last update of the interactive maps.

Percentage change values can differ between sub-state and state and territory regions. State and territory totals include records with 'unknown' sub-state characteristics. The differences may increase in size in finer levels of data. For more information, see the Data components, totals and index calculation section of Data limitations and revisions.

SA4 and SA3 boundaries presented accord with the Australian Statistical Geography Standard, Volume 1 - Main Structure and Greater Capital City Statistical Areas, July 2016.

How to use the interactive map:

  • Select: Geographical area can be selected using the Statistical Area 3 (SA3) or Statistical Area 4 (SA4) upper tabs.
  • Search: the magnifying glass icon opens the search function. It is set to look for locations such as addresses, suburbs and postcodes contained within an SA4 or SA3 region.
  • Reference week: the date slider at the bottom of the map can be moved to select a particular week of interest, or see changes over time.
  • Data: on the relevant map, an SA4 or SA3 can be selected to view the underlying data. The time series index estimates for SA4 and SA3s can be found in Table 5 of the Data downloads.
  • If the maps do not load successfully, please try refreshing the page.

Sex

Since the week ending 14 March 2020:

Payroll jobs: 

  • Worked by males decreased by 1.0%
  • Worked by females increased by 0.8%

Total wages: 

  • Payments to females increased by 4.7%
  • Payments to males decreased by 0.1%

 

Between the weeks ending 13 and 27 March 2021:

Payroll jobs: 

  • Worked by females increased by 0.2%
  • Worked by males decreased by 0.1%

Total wages: 

  • Payments to males decreased by 0.9%
  • Payments to females increased by 0.2%
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Table 2 - Percentage change by sex
 Payroll jobs Total wages 
 Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021
Males-0.1%-1.0%-0.9%-0.1%
Females0.2%0.8%0.2%4.7%
All persons (b)0.1%1.0%-0.4%2.1%


a. Care should be exercised when focusing on the most recent movements in payroll jobs and wages. For more information, please see Data limitations and revisions. Weekly change data are available in the Data downloads. 
b. Indexes for males and females can move independently from All persons indexes due to the inclusion of persons with 'unknown' sex in the calculation of the All persons index. For more information see the Data components, total and index calculation section in Data limitations and revisions.


 

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  1. Care should be exercised when focusing on the most recent movements in payroll jobs. For more information, please see Data limitations and revisions. Weekly change data are available in the Data downloads section.

Age group

Since the week ending 14 March 2020 the largest changes across age groups were:

Payroll jobs: 

  • Worked by people aged 70 years and over increased by 6.0%
  • Worked by people aged aged 60-69 increased by 5.0%

Total wages: 

  • Payments to people aged 70 years and over increased by 9.5%
  • Payments to people aged 60-69 increased by 6.5%

 

Between the weeks ending 13 and 27 March 2021 the largest changes across age groups were:

Payroll jobs: 

  • Worked by people aged 15-19 increased by 2.3%
  • Worked by people aged 70 years and over increased by 0.5%

Total wages: 

  • Payments to people aged 15-19 increased by 1.1%
  • Payments to people aged 60-69 decreased by 0.9%
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Table 3 - Percentage change by age group
 Payroll jobs Total wages 
 Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021
15-19 year olds2.3%0.6%1.1%3.7%
20-29 year olds-0.1%-0.9%-0.3%1.7%
30-39 year olds-0.1%1.1%-0.6%2.0%
40-49 year olds0.0%0.5%-0.4%0.9%
50-59 year olds0.1%1.6%-0.5%2.2%
60-69 year olds0.1%5.0%-0.9%6.5%
Aged 70 years and over0.5%6.0%-0.5%9.5%
All persons0.1%1.0%-0.4%2.1%

a. Care should be exercised when focusing on the most recent movements in payroll jobs and wages. For more information, please see Data limitations and revisions. Weekly change data are available in Data downloads.

5 year age groups

Time series estimates of payroll jobs by 5 year age groups (presented as index values) up to the week ending 27 March 2021 are available in Table 8 of the Data downloads. 

Industry

Since the week ending 14 March 2020 the largest changes across industry were:

Payroll jobs: 

  • Public administration and safety increased by 11.0%
  • Accommodation and food services decreased by 9.5%

Total wages: 

  • Mining decreased by 9.4%
  • Transport, postal and warehousing decreased by 8.0%

 

Between the weeks ending 13 and 27 March 2021 the largest changes across industry were:

Payroll jobs: 

  • Accommodation and food services increased by 1.7%
  • Information media and telecommunications decreased by 1.5%

Total wages: 

  • Mining decreased by 5.9%
  • Financial and insurance services increased by 3.8%
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Table 4 - Percentage change by industry
 Payroll jobs Total wages 
 Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (a)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021
Agriculture, forestry and fishing-1.4%-4.1%-2.1%0.0%
Mining (b)0.0%-0.5%-5.9%-9.4%
Manufacturing0.2%-2.7%1.0%0.5%
Electricity, gas, water and waste services-0.2%2.2%-2.6%-0.4%
Construction-0.6%-3.5%-0.9%-3.4%
Wholesale trade-0.4%-2.8%-0.6%-1.4%
Retail trade0.4%-1.6%-1.8%-1.1%
Accommodation and food services1.7%-9.5%-0.1%-7.7%
Transport, postal and warehousing-0.2%-6.4%-1.1%-8.0%
Information media and telecommunications-1.5%-9.3%-0.4%-3.2%
Financial and insurance services0.2%6.8%3.8%6.0%
Rental, hiring and real estate services-0.2%-1.9%-2.3%1.8%
Professional, scientific and technical services-0.7%-1.0%-0.6%1.3%
Administrative and support services0.4%3.0%0.0%5.7%
Public administration and safety1.1%11.0%0.6%7.1%
Education and training0.8%-1.3%-0.6%0.9%
Health care and social assistance0.0%3.4%-0.2%6.4%
Arts and recreation services0.5%0.8%-0.5%-0.7%
Other services-0.6%-1.3%-0.4%4.2%
All industries0.1%1.0%-0.4%2.1%

a. Care should be exercised when focusing on the most recent movements in payroll jobs and wages. Weekly change data are available in Data downloads.
b. The Mining industry wages estimates in March and September may include annual bonuses. Please refer to the seasonality section in Data limitations and revisions for further information.

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Industry subdivision - Payroll jobs

Time series estimates of payroll jobs by industry subdivision (presented as index values) up to the week ending 13 March 2021 are available in Table 6 of the Data downloads. These estimates are only updated in alternate releases. 

The subdivision level is the second broadest grouping of industries within the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification. Industry subdivisions are built up from the industry groups which, in turn, are built up from industry classes.

Employment size

The following experimental estimates present payroll jobs by employment size between the weeks ending 14 March 2020 and 27 March 2021. 

Care should be exercised when focusing on recent movements in payroll jobs by employment size, as they are subject to higher than usual levels of revision (over a longer period) than other estimates. This is particularly the case for small employers (with under 20 employees). Further information is presented on the impact of revisions to the small employers (under 20 employees) index in the Data limitations and revisions section of the Methodology (under Variation in revisions).

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Table 5 - Percentage change in Payroll jobs by state and territory, by employment size as at 14 March 2020 (a)
  Change between 13 Mar 2021 and 27 Mar 2021 (b)Change between 14 Mar 2020 and 27 Mar 2021
Under 20 employeesNew South Wales-1.2%-2.9%
Victoria-1.2%-2.4%
Queensland-0.9%-0.1%
South Australia-0.5%2.1%
Western Australia-1.2%3.3%
Tasmania-0.8%-1.0%
Northern Territory-0.4%5.1%
Australian Capital Territory-2.6%-2.4%
Australia-1.1%-1.2%
20-199 employeesNew South Wales0.2%-1.7%
Victoria0.1%-2.8%
Queensland-0.1%-1.5%
South Australia0.4%-0.1%
Western Australia1.0%2.3%
Tasmania-0.8%-4.7%
Northern Territory0.5%0.4%
Australian Capital Territory-0.9%-2.4%
Australia0.2%-1.5%
200 employees and overNew South Wales0.4%0.5%
Victoria0.9%1.4%
Queensland1.1%-1.3%
South Australia0.7%1.5%
Western Australia0.7%1.3%
Tasmania1.0%1.0%
Northern Territory-0.1%1.4%
Australian Capital Territory0.8%0.2%
Australia0.8%0.5%

a. Care should be exercised when focusing on the most recent movements in payroll jobs. For more information, please see Data limitations and revisions.

Data downloads

Table 1: National spotlight

Table 2: State and territory spotlight

Table 3: Industry spotlight

Table 4: Payroll jobs and wages indexes

Table 5: Sub-state - Payroll jobs indexes

These estimates are updated in alternate releases, and were updated to the week ending 27 March 2021 on Wednesday 14 April 2021. 

Table 6: Industry subdivision - Payroll jobs indexes

These estimates are updated in alternate releases. They were last updated on Wednesday 31 March 2021 and will be next updated on Wednesday 28 April 2021. 

Table 7: Employer characteristics - Payroll jobs index

Previously titled Employment size - Payroll jobs index

Table 8: Jobholder characteristics - Payroll jobs index

Contains estimates of payroll jobs by 5 year age groups, available in this release since 3 March 2021. 

All data cubes

Updated to include Table 5 as released on Wednesday 14 April 2021

Changes in this release

The following sections of the Methodology were updated in this release:

  • How data are collected: Other data sources. Also includes new subsections on the ABS Business Register and ATO Client Register
  • Methods review: Includes a new subsection on the Client Register update

 

Post-release changes

16 April 2021: Interactive maps updated to the week ending 27 March 2021.

14 April 2021: Sub-state - Payroll jobs indexes (Table 5 of the Data downloads) were updated to the week ending 27 March 2021.

Previous articles

Previously published articles and information of interest are linked below:

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 6160.0.55.001.