October 25, 2023 by Dymphna

Energy prices soar while job ads tank: the economy in pictures

See the world through the eyes of an economist: energy prices, job ads, average household size, and real wages.

Here are the charts that caught my eye this week.

First up, inflation jumped up in the month, largely thanks to oil and energy prices, which as you can see, have spiked in recent times:

Australia’s unemployment rate held steady in the month, but largely due to people leaving the labour force, rather than new jobs being created. And based on the job ads data, the unemployment rate looks set to lift in the months ahead.

There was an interesting chart on average household size, which suggest that the number of people per dwelling is starting to pick up again, after tanking during Covid. At the margin, this might help the housing crisis a little. But there’s still a way to go.

Finally, Labor was crowing during the week about presiding over a large increase in wages. But its only true at a nominal level. When you adjust for inflation to try to get a feel for real purchasing power, real wages are going backwards… fast!

And that’s how the world looks through the eyes of an economist this week.