Roy Morgan Poll: Unemployment and Under-employment up in New Zealand!

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Unemployed under-employment

 

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A new Roy Morgan poll has un-employment in New Zealand steady at 8.5%, with a further 11.3% under-employed. Collectively,  19.8% of the workforce (519,000 people – up 69,000)  were either unemployed or under-employed. For the December Quarter 2013, according to Roy Morgan:

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New Zealand real unemployment steady at 8.5%

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By contrast, the last Household Labour Force Survey (September 2013 quarter) reported 6.2% unemployed, and the 2013 Census survey gave a figure of 7.1%.

Gary Morgan, of Roy Morgan said,

The latest Roy Morgan New Zealand December Quarter 2013 employment figures show New Zealand unemployment at 8.5% (unchanged from September Quarter 2013). However, New Zealand under-employment – those working part-time but looking for more work – has jumped to a record high 11.3% (up 2.7%). It should be noted that this is the fourth year in a row that under-employment has increased in the December Quarter. However, this year’s increase is substantially larger than in previous years and must represent a major concern for Prime Minister John Key seeking re-election.

“This means a total of 19.8% (up 2.7%) New Zealanders are either unemployed or under-employed – almost identical to the figure earlier last year in the March Quarter 2013 of 19.9%. Total New Zealand unemployment and under-employment is also significantly higher than when Prime Minister John Key won the 2011 Election (19.0%). Key clearly needs to reduce unemployment and under-employment during 2014 to have a strong chance of winning re-election to a third term in November.”

Bearing in mind that Statistics NZ defines being employed as anyone working one hour or more, per week, whether paid or unpaid, and it becomes apparent as to why unemployment/employment statistics in this country are skewed towards the low end. Statistics NZ is simply not presenting us with a real picture of  unemployment.

This, of course, suits governments of either hue, whether National or Labour-led.

Roy Morgan further  explained how their polling was conducted;

The Roy Morgan New Zealand Unemployment estimate is obtained by surveying a New Zealand-wide cross section by telephone. An unemployed person is classified as part of the labour force if they are looking for work, no matter when.

The results are not seasonally adjusted and provide an accurate measure of monthly unemployment estimates in New Zealand. The Statistics New Zealand Unemployment estimates are obtained by mostly telephone interviews.

Households selected for the Statistics New Zealand Labour Survey are interviewed each quarter for up to two years (eight interviews), with one-eighth of the sample being replaced each quarter. The first interview is conducted face-to-face. Subsequent interviews are then conducted by telephone.

Statistics New Zealand classifies an unemployed person as part of the labour force only if, when surveyed, they had actively sought work in the past four weeks ending with the reference week and were available for work or had a new job to start within the next four weeks.

Statistics New Zealand Unemployment estimates are also seasonally adjusted. For these reasons the Statistics New Zealand Unemployment estimates are different from the Roy Morgan Unemployment estimate.

There is a similar divergence caused in Australia’s ABS Unemployment estimates and the Roy Morgan Australian Unemployment estimates. Roy Morgan Executive Chairman Gary Morgan’s concerns regarding the ABS Unemployment estimate are clearly outlined in his letter to the Australian Financial Review, which was not published.

No doubt National/ACT supporters will find little joy in these figures and will casually dismiss them as unreliable or some other reason.

But one suspects they will sing a different tune when a Labour-led government is installed later this year, and Roy Morgan polling continues to show higher-than-official  unemployment statistics.

At the point the Right will suddenly “discover” Roy Morgan.

Note: The Household Labour Force Survey for the  December 2013 quarter will be released on 5 February 2014.

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References

Roy Morgan:  New Zealand real unemployment steady at 8.5% and a further 11.3% (up 2.7%) of workforce are under-employed

Roy Morgan:  Roy Morgan measures real unemployment in Australia not the “perception” of unemployment

Statistics NZ: 2013 Census QuickStats about national highlights

Statistics NZ: Household Labour Force Survey: September 2013 quarter

Statistics NZ: Definitions – About the Household Labour Force Survey

 

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18 percent of 18-24 year olds unemployed

 

Above image acknowledgment: Francis Owen

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= fs =

 

30 COMMENTS

  1. It seems to me that unemployment rates will always be a problem for any political party in power until we fundamentally change the way our communal system works. Technological advances have made unemployment inevitable, but the benefits of these advances are in the hands of a few instead of being shared with us all.

    • I remember as a little kid in school being told of the day when we machines would do much of the work for us. Of course it was painted or at least seemed like that utopian dream come true.
      It took till a capitalist pointed out to me that this end is capitalisms as well as socialisms.
      So we are headed inexorably toward this end but we have chosen the path where the machines are used just to advantage the few and assist them in the game of harvesting all the wealth.
      It has always been this way, of course, and over and over it has led to bloodshed. It saddens me to think it probably will again

  2. Yep, just like in the US. There has been NO economic recovery in so far as unemployment is concerned, despite Obama’s bloviating and Bernanke’s incredibly destructive QE and ZIRP. Since when did “not actively seeking employment” somehow increase employment? Yeah.
    http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-gLju8CYAsu8/UtGVR0NrGsI/AAAAAAAADGQ/kgjgKbs-D_0/s1600/labor-force-dropouts-drive-lower-unemployment-rate-1-10-14.png Feel free to google “US participation” chart 2014 yourself.
    The problem for governments is that you can only tax people that are actually working…

  3. Not to mention the fact of course, that vast numbers of those fortunate enough to have a job are working for a very low hourly rate. You would think there would be enough ammo here for a half-decent opposition to go ballistic. The silence is deafening.

    • The silence is deafening because the dat Frank presents is simply not correct. Cunliffe et al know the economy is growing and so are the job numbers and wage rates. Reliable data demonstrates that.

      “The unemployment rate fell to 6 percent in the three months ended Dec. 31, in line with the forecast by a Reuters survey of economists, and down from 6.2 percent in the September quarter, according to Statistics New Zealand’s household labour force survey. That’s the lowest jobless rate since June 2009.

      Employment rose 1.1 percent in the quarter, beating the 0.5 percent pace of growth forecast, led by gains in retail, accommodation and food services, construction, and professional scientific, technical, administration and support services. Employment grew 3 percent on an annual basis.

      “We’re seeing strength across the labour market, particularly in industries that provide service,” industry and labour statistics manager Diane Ramsay said in a statement. “The unemployment rate has been falling and employment rising for the last 18 months, with both now at levels last seen in early 2009.””

      http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU1402/S00108/nz-jobless-rate-falls-to-3-year-low-6-on-jobs-growth.htm

  4. “The problem for governments is that you can only tax people that are actually working…”
    If you were as cynical as me you could have added …”and corporations are too large and powerful to pay their fair share of taxes”.

  5. Nicely done Frank. Also it looks like a reasonable living wage is gaining traction with a few City Councils (among others) leading the charge.

    Having said that, I wonder when the “dole”, and other benefits, will also reflect the onslaught of power prices, food, petrol etc etc etc. I was made redundant a couple of years ago at 63. Even with my wife working, 12-14 hours a week, we are still behind on just about everything except the mortgage. No in-work tax credits as not enough hours.

    BTW we had our kids years ago when we had enough money to “chose” to have them! Without a small amount from our 3 kids at varsity we would be in even worse shape. WINZ ask me, with a straight face, “Are you looking for work?”.

  6. Now you are getting your data from a Roy Morgan telephone poll!

    Now for some real data…

    “New Zealand’s unemployment rate fell to a three-year low in the fourth quarter of 2013 as jobs growth beat expectations, led by gains in the retail, accommodation and hospitality sectors.

    The unemployment rate fell to 6 percent in the three months ended Dec. 31, in line with the forecast by a Reuters survey of economists, and down from 6.2 percent in the September quarter, according to Statistics New Zealand’s household labour force survey. That’s the lowest jobless rate since June 2009.”

    New Zealand’s participation rate rose to 68.9 percent in the “December quarter from 68.6 percent in September, and was up 0.7 percentage points from a year earlier, against a backdrop of rising inbound migration.”

    “The figures come as surveys last month showed signs of an improving labour market, with gains in employment confidence and firms finding it harder to hire find skilled and unskilled workers. ”

    “The number of construction workers rose to 185,800 in the quarter from 177,800 in the third quarter, and manufacturing jobs increased to 254,000 from 247,900. Retail, accommodation and hospitality employees increased to 363,100 from 356,200. Agriculture, fishing and forestry employees increased to 149,500 from 138,700.”

    http://www.scoop.co.nz/stories/BU1402/S00108/nz-jobless-rate-falls-to-3-year-low-6-on-jobs-growth.htm

    • For anyone interested in reliable data, I would point out that the survey on which this piece is written was based on a sample size of 6,239 people. That’s right, only 6,239 people.

        • Assuming everything else is equal, your household labour survey is only approximately twice as accurate. Now please run back to Crosby Textor and ask how I worked that out, because I don’t think you actually know. You are just a mouthpiece.

          • 30,000 v’s 6239.

            If you seriously swallow this biased nonsense rather than the official data, then you’ll believe anything.

            • And as usual, you’ve ignored several salient points that’ve been raised, IV…

              Simply doing a C&P of a media story, without analysis, is simply that; copy & pasting.

              The flaws in the HLFS have been pointed out. Feel free to comment on those, if you can.

              • Any data set has flaws Frank. But the HLFS surveys 5 times the number of people your RM survey does. And it’s trends that matter. And the trend is that unemployment is down, jobs are up!

                • Really IV?

                  In which case you’ll be interested to learn that the Reserve Bank, ANZ, and Westpac also have reservations about HLFS data,

                  “The Reserve Bank has expressed concern at its variance with other indicators. [2] A commentator in the Westpac Bulletin, puzzled by the continued weakness of the HLFS in 2012 compared to the Quarterly Employment Survey (QES) and other labour market indicators, described it as ‘confusion reigns’ and suggested that survey ‘volatility’ played a role. [3] The ANZ commentator is cautious: ‘The HLFS has been very volatile in recent years, and we and the Reserve Bank will treat the result with a degree of scepticism, preferring to take note of a wide range of labour market indicators.”

                  http://www.parliament.nz/mi-nz/parl-support/research-papers/00PLEcoRP2014011/unemployment-and-employment-statistics-the-household-labour

                  There is more, but I think you get the gist.

                  • Yet it remains the official measure of unemployment in NZ Frank. What do the Reserve Bank, ANZ, and Westpac say about the little survey you wrote an entire opinion piece on Frank? You know, that survey that telephones around 1/5th of the individuals surveyed in the HLFS?

  7. I will shock many, but I am tempted to vote for NZ First this coming election, given the imbecile views and policies that some on the “left” have come up with. I am no fan of Peters, but he is at least committed to NZ, which is something I struggle to find many others to commit themselves to. I really feel, too many have lost the plot, that is the “left’, I am afraid, and I used to feel home there. Sorry, I am disappointed.

    • Marc, there are many good people on the left, but for the most part the folk that inhabit that space today are disgruntled underachievers, who can’t accept the world has moved on from the type of socialism that wreaked eastern Europe.

      • And yet, IV, you seem to delight spending so much time here with us “under achievers”… *rolls eyes*

        What was that you were complaining to Martyn about? Personal attacks, was it?

        Oh dear. Poor wee sausage.

        • Oh I love it here Frank, I really do. Some of what I read here I actually agree with, even from you. But when I don’t, I’ll put my 2 cents in.

      • I was rather thinking of some hypocrites, who talk “left” but act little differently to what Key and his lot do. Also some are idealists, which is close to naivety or being “dreamers”.

        So I must disappoint you, INTRINSICVALUE.

        And if I would ever vote NZ First, then it would be more of a “protest vote”, little else. I am concerned that the Nats may sway them (and Peters) to support them if they need him, so after all I will most likely not vote as suggested above, for that reason alone. It was just a thought.

        • Marc left wing policies destroyed the economies of virtually the entire eastern european bloc. Be careful what you wish for…

  8. This statement says it all for me – “Statistics NZ defines being employed as anyone working one hour or more, per week, whether paid or unpaid”

    Which seems to indicate that all stay-at-home parents are classed as being employed due to their work raising children. For me, being employed means working for money, and working much more than 1 hour a week. And I wish the government would think that as well.

    • How many people are part of the data set because they work one a hour week, David? And as it is the trend we are most concerned about, as long as the data sets are consistent, does it even matter?

      • How many people are part of the data set because they work one a hour week, David?

        Bingo.

        Now you’re asking the wright questions!

        … does it even matter?

        Of course it does. Otherwise would you be happy spending millions of tax-dollars on statistics that are not telling the whole picture?

        And if you are satisfied with the HLSF, then you’ll be happy that unemployment was 3.4% according to the New Zealand December 2007 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey? (http://tinyurl.com/65rh2pc)

        That was under Labour.

        Are the stats still valid?

        • “Bingo. Now you’re asking the wright questions!”

          And the answer???

          “Otherwise would you be happy spending millions of tax-dollars on statistics that are not telling the whole picture? ”

          It provides a trend Frank. No data set is perfect, but the HLFS has been collected since 1986, so there are relatively long term trends available.

          “And if you are satisfied with the HLSF, then you’ll be happy that unemployment was 3.4% according to the New Zealand December 2007 Quarter Household Labourforce Survey?”

          Of course. I’m consistent Frank, you’re the one so desperate that you use a Roy Morgan survey of 6,000 people.

          But just so people understand how much you cherry pick, I’ll give you an update. By the time Labour left office in 2008, unemployment had risen to 4.6%, and was heading up. By June 2009 it was 6.0%.

          By contrast, we are now coming out of a global financial crisis with unemployment at 6.0% and dropping.

          Present all the facts Frank, and your argument evaporates before your eyes.

Comments are closed.