Side hustle rises as cost of living rises

by AAP | September 14, 2022 1:39 p.m. | New

Australians are racking up side hustle in record numbers, with around 900,000 working more than one job in the June quarter.

This means that 6.5% of the working population held several jobs in the last quarter.

“This is the highest rate since the quarterly series began in 1994, and about 0.5 percentage points above its pre-pandemic level,” said Lauren Ford, head of labor statistics. at the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Australian Council of Trade Union President Sally McManus said people had no choice but to work multiple jobs to cover their bills.

Household budgets were hit by rising living costs, with headline inflation hitting 6.1% in the June quarter.

“This is at a time when profits at our largest companies continue to rise and labor productivity is at the highest level in a decade,” Ms McManus said.

“It just shows the need to update our labor laws to get wages moving again.”

The ultra-competitive job market was also reflected in labor statistics for the quarter, with filled jobs increasing by 2.2% and job vacancies by 3.1%.

Hours worked also rose 2.9% for the quarter after the workforce was knocked down by COVID-19 and flooding in the March quarter.

NAB economist Alan Oster said higher interest rates would eventually eat away at disposable income and force households to limit spending.

“While it shouldn’t bite until the end of 2022, 2023 will likely be a slower year for consumers and therefore for the retail industry,” Oster said.

Rising interest rates could hurt mortgage holders, but it also means savers are finally getting decent interest rates.

When the Reserve Bank of Australia began raising interest rates in May, banks were generally quick to pass the higher interest rates on to mortgage holders, but more reluctant to do the same to savers.

However, RateCity research director Sally Tindall said some banks are now actively seeking savers.

With mortgage funding costs rising due to the rise in the official exchange rate, Ms Tindall said savers’ deposits were becoming an increasingly important part of the funding mix.

“That’s why the lowest rate home loan providers are now primarily banks, rather than the non-bank lenders we’ve grown accustomed to,” she said.

“The good news is that savers have once again become a hot commodity after years of lackluster returns, but they will still have to shop around if they want to get the best deals.”

Market leaders offer interest rates of up to 3.60% for savers.

But Ms Tindall said some banks were still picking and choosing which savings accounts to charge higher interest rates to, or not raising rates at all.

The big four banks raised rates by 0.50% for variable mortgage customers following September’s cash rate decision, but National Australia Bank and ANZ have yet to announce interest rates. higher interest on one of their savings accounts.

Commonwealth Bank and Westpac have so far passed on a higher interest rate to some savings accounts, but not others.

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