Unemployment 3.4%! Keep MIQ locked!


Labour crunch: NZ unemployment hits lowest level on record

Unemployment has fallen sharply to 3.4 per cent in the September quarter, StatsNZ said this morning.

This is the lowest level since the start of the Global Financial Crisis in 2008.

The last time unemployment was below 4 per cent was in June 2008, shortly before the worst effects of the GFC hit the economy.

The current rate is on par with the previous record low set in December 2007.

So locking NZ off to hyper tourism, migrant workers exploitation and international student exploitation has been great for workers!

Without the smorgasbord of migrant workers and international students to exploit, NZ bosses have been forged to hire locals!

Isn’t it wonderful seeing them forced to hire Kiwis minus all their bullshit lies about us being lazy?

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  1. Hard core neo libs and capitalists of all stripes will be bricking themselves with unemployment trending down again–because the smaller the “reserve army of labour” becomes the more upward pressure there will be on wages and favourable work rights.

    Now is the time to put the pressure on for national Fair Pay Agreements and extended right to strike. Are you listening NZCTU and Union Secretaries? If they are not seeing the opportunity, then workers will need to drive a campaign for wage increases at least in line with CPI.

    • your right tiger but it’ll never happen both trade union leaders and LINOs have their snouts too firmly in the trough.

      • @gagarin
        Bold words there. Not all unions have “their snouts in the trough”
        There are still some Unions working in the wild ensuring their members get fair treatment, fighting to (re) establish work conditions that are favourable to the workers. What we need to do is show the people who were born in the nineties and have only ever known the neoliberal wasteland that is employment in this country that collectivism is the key to advancement. People? Power!!

      • I would say they are class collaborationist in ideology rather than all personally on the take–ie class peace with employers rather than class struggle on behalf of the NZ working class.

        There are several very good unions such as FIRST and UNITE and the Maritime/Transport group. The public sector has some good members, many of the Teachers put up a great fight against national standards and charter schools during the Key years.

        The thing is as Leftorium says, reviving collective action with community and union organising

  2. There are a heap of employers that cannot get staff to fill vacancies from labouring to highly skilled operators and this shortage will impact on NZ s ability to take advantage of the rebound economy that is taking place overseas. Most of those not working now are those who will not work no matter the wages . All western type economies need imported skills .

    • Most such countries also have an underclass of discarded people and their descendants. The longest of tails. Ordinary working people with little to no ability to influence macro economic settings that then were demonised as “dole bludgers” after zero was done to retrain them or provide dignified alternatives.

      When Rogernomics swung a wrecking ball through protected NZ manufacturing and state infrastructure like MOW and Forestry, and flogged off public assets to the private sector much damage occurred. And when Ruthanasia truly put the boot in with market rents, MOAB benefit cuts, & union busting ECA, the capacity of the working class to fight back was further diminished.

      The division of NZ into a Tale of Two Cities was set in motion and today 50% own just 2% of the wealth and often have precarious employment and prospects. And 50% does pretty damn well–the admin class, the petty bourgeoisie, the top level arse lickers.

      So lets do without the indentured migrant labour, and the unpaid interns and forced labour students, shall we for a year or two an see how it all shakes out…

  3. “Isn’t it wonderful seeing them forced to hire Kiwis minus all their bullshit lies about us being lazy?”
    Yeah it goes to show what bullshit it really was. Trying to gaslight people into accepting cheap labor.

    • Hiring Kiwis to do what. Where do you people live. Anywhere where there’s summer fruit to be picked eg Hawkes Bay the varnies are prominent and in large numbers waiting for the season to ramp up. Locals doing this work are in a minority. You can earn well above minimum wage but locals aren’t interested. Mind you it is work.

  4. Dare i say – what about productivity, a much more important stat than unemployment stats, this is the kind of myopic socialist view that will get us all into deep trouble – bring me the workers that will drive productivity not the ones who just do as little as possible and grab a pay cheque.

    • I think it was when NZ took away employment conditions in the 1980’s, then followed this up with migrant labour (subsidised by everyone elses taxes with WFF and free health care/schooling as a sweetener for the low wages) that our productivity when downwards compared to other nations.

      While others nations invested in plant and machinery and looked at future trends that NZ failed to capitalise such as organic food, green energy, biodegradable packaging. NZ lobbied for cheap labour for intensive agriculture, retail and construction and dirty coal so they could harvest short term profits and deliver very little.

      Why invest in your business and people when you are enabled to rip off consumers and employees? Now many don’t even bother with inconvenient taxes. Cash labour, cash goods are the go! If you get caught then the fine is trivial, it’s not like it’s a criminal offence or anything. Worth the risk, 100%!

      Welcome to neoliberalism, NZ poverty growing and divided, UK left Brexit and can’t organise the basics, USA just had the Capitol attack.

      Neoliberalism is about creating division, destroying the environment and corrupting everything from profit driven education, labour, health care to democracy.

      On that note,

      Report: Plastic is on track to become a bigger climate problem than coal

    • What about productivity? Wages and productivity parted company in the early 90s according even to Treasury graphs once union density dropped after National’s union busting ECA.

      NZ employers have creamed it for 30 years while workers had to pay for their own education, training and safety equipment!

      Time to rebalance things and stick it up the boss class.

    • Bang on the money there Alan P in regards to productivity, Have a feeling that these will be different statistics this time next year when there are no more lockdowns and the wage subsidy payments will be all but a distant memory.

    • Gee Allan, how about providing some incentive for productivity eh? ‘cos all workers are lazy right? That sounds like a myopic capitalist neoliberal view.

    • allen p, NZ has some of the longest working hours in the developed world but one of the lowest rates of ‘productivity’ another failure of neo liberal economonic theory, note ‘theory’ not science, economics are ideology not facts.

  5. Now we just have to hope employers will get out there and start training the young as they used to do 50 years ago. No expensive self paid degrees and subsequent debt, bonded work arrangements and specialised training and near full employment. Pity we cant also now achieve the fact that many people got on the property ladder at age 20. (Because they earned wages for 40 hours a week and didnt have to pay off student debt). You earned while you learnt and had to stay in a job for 3 years or more, employers and employees both got what they wanted. And it worked.

    • And also we used to have doctors and professionals who could do their job, because education was free.

      Now a degree is so devalued with profiteering, it is more a participation certificate, not necessary showing any skill in that area!

      • SNZ. What absolute bollicks . Doctors are incredibly valued. I live in CHB where one of the more busy medical centres operates. There’s a mix of immigrant and NZ bred doctors. All are appreciated. Most new ones are hard to keep because more money is to be made in city practices that have less patients but can be charged more. The problem is nothing to do with any qualifications a doctor might have but more to do with where and how hard they wish to work. The medical centre is not isolated but within 45 mins from Hastings and Napier. Unless you can table the proof of your statement stop talking BS. Your lack of understanding of why this country hasn’t invested in more sophisticated capital upgrades that could reflect a greener production of our goods is misguided. We are a little country with few people and many small businesses. The few big players here are profit driven. The only cheap agriculture you could be meaning is picking fruit and that is changing. All other intensive agriculture including dairy requires skills that demand good wages. Do your homework before generalising with your version of how it is.

  6. ‘what about productivity,”?
    Who milks more cows faster than any other country? We do.
    Who shears sheep better and faster? We do.
    How do we do it? With technology and organisation.
    Take a look at the official statistics sometime and see how well Kiwis produce compared to other countries.
    We are usually in the top ten.
    I spent ten years living and working fulltime in China and I still own a business there. From my personal experience I can tell you Chinese workers are cheap but they are not more productive.
    This is not their fault – it is because their management cannot organise a piss up in a brewery( even if someone turns the taps on for them).
    Allan P if you sometime read the research done by George Rude into peasant, slave and low wage societies you might realise that well paid skilled, mechanised workers actually produce more and better than slaves
    or serfs.
    Serfdom in Europe did not end because landowners wanted to help serfs. It ended because landowners found gangs of free labourers worked harder and faster than semi-slave labour.
    I have employed people most of my life and I find that people who complain that they cannot get their employees to produce are generally shit employers.

  7. Stats NZ aye? ” Lies, damn lies and statistics! “Has it occurred to any one other than me, perhaps, that those figures might simply be bull shit?
    We all know by now that AO/NZ is clean,( No, not really. Ask any one living in Christchurch if they miss their drinkable water? ) green, ( Junk grass = green grass = fast grass = cow farts creating a burning Hell. ) and a swindling bullshitters paradise.( Property values inflated by foreign banksters and money lenders and enabled by a cadre of deep-state, dark-money Kiwi-As privateers anyone? )
    ( Speaking of @ Clean Green? Anyone heard of him? Hope he’s ok… )

  8. Yeah sure it is. Whereas real unemployment is still at 11.3%.
    359,000 people in receipt of some kind of financial support.

    • indeed, every working for families tax credit is a direct subsidy to employers and a lever that keeps wages low…the best way to help the mythical ‘young kiwi families’ is a legislated decent living wage and the ability to use a bloody condom.

      • Let’s not forget the REAL beneficiaries of our tax dollars, Gagarin, being aka wealthy pensioners, which by a massive dollar figure are paid more in total than any other beneficiary demographic there is. Pure theft. They call it “getting my tax back”. I call it “ripping off everyone else”. I see it everyday through my industry. It’s deplorable. Yuk

        • I think free pensions are great if you worked in NZ most of your life or lived most of your life in NZ/ Top tax rates were 70% at one point…..in addition gen X have user pays everything.

          Under neoliberalism, migrants can somehow access a NZ pension by just living in NZ for 10 years. They don’t have to pay any tax here to qualify.

          A NZ pension is worth around 1 million NZ dollars. Essentially a fortune for doing nothing. Many different ways to come, via children who come to NZ to study, or invest money for a short period of time in NZ.

          That does not include free health care, aged care and Goldcard so retiring in NZ as a “NZ resident or citizen’ has huge financial benefits.

          At the same time, the government is constantly penny pinching for everyone else and expecting workers to pay for non guaranteed Kiwisaver. and are advised they will not get the same pensions as we can’t afford it. (So keen to give it away).

          The woke on super, are very silent about this, and their woke thinking is that Kiwis should pay high taxes, and then means test the pension (aka not get one) so that this can continue unabated and have Kiwis support overseas pensioners retiring in NZ with a free NZ pension.

          Neoliberalism also currently gives qualifying migrant pensioners free health care and aged care for the most part. This has lead to an epidemic of aged migrants coming to NZ to retire, or one member of the family has a job and the rest can arrive in NZ with no criteria – who also need health care, benefits, housing, etc. The opposite of what immigration promised.

        • yeahhhh but non wealthy pensioners who I would guess are the majority are living in penury, the only solution to the pension paradox is means testing and that’s a wedge to a slippery slope I’d rather not give the natz future control of and at the end of the day all pensioners paid into a specific scheme and expected the stated benefits….now if you wanna change the playing field for new payers today that’s a different matter but that won’t have effects for 50yrs or so.

          before you ask no I’m not a pensioner.

          • Nope means testing is worse. Why should people who work hard and save money in NZ don’t get a pension when people who come to NZ later in life and contribute nothing and are poor, make the NZ taxpayers pay for them.

            Sending the wrong message as usual.

            They did that with wages and now we can’t retain professionals and experts anymore and are importing in criminals and we are free falling in world rankings from everything, productivity, poverty increases, carbon emissions, educational rankings…

            So NZ wants to support the world’s poor retiring here because the government can’t say no to foreign free loaders?

            Doesn’t seem to be a winner!

  9. NZ ‘had’ COVID free status to offer, now it hasn’t even got that. All it has is poor people living in over priced slum properties, that in the 3 little pigs scale, sit somewhere between the straw and wood house. Add to that the average car is a 1989 impreza and NZ bosses are little egotystical Africaans Napolean superiority complex types and NZ is about as appealing as a CCCP show town in Northern Siberia. If you were able to chose between any other OECD country or NZ its a no brainer. NZ is sad, and getting sadder. The economy is about to tank because the fat controller Robbo and the fat snout Orr are just out for themselves and about as competant as a one armed archer. NZ was amazing, neo liberals took control and now it is only still amazing for 5%. Get out while they still let you…. oh wait?

  10. You ever had a real job mate? My staff are sick of working ridiculous overtime hours to keep our business afloat because we literally cannot find any extra staff. Those on benefits are lucky if they turn up for three shifts before you never see them again. 3.4% unemployment is not sustainable for an economy, there’s no room for people to move.

    • Has the system created or had a hand to play in their poor decisions leading to a sick body and mind? Rendering them unable to work properly?

  11. Frightening talented people with poor employment histories like myself,, and like girlfriends I have known[we seem to find each other somehow, fate, destiny, Grey Lynn] all share the unpopular moniker of ‘gifted adults’.

    Comes off sounding like we’re special eh?
    Like we are better, have been bestowed gifts from god or risen above the dna soup of ordinary people.

    But usually normies think we just pull it out of our asses to make us feel better when doctors label us as bipolar or adhd, depressed or whatever other DX to make money off and shuffle the gifted to the side line, or to the dole queue.

    Within ancient societies gifted adults performed important functions, often the arts and science. Still do. But as science and art has become increasing politicized, the true gifted have ended up unemployed for not being agreeable enough. Try being a creation believing scientist while working in a university or other large entity.

    Many of the roles and jobs that the true gifted used to do, are often now done by talentless ass licking hacks, hence the plethora of shit music-arts and bad science like adults need to drink milk.

    In the past, every scientist used to be a near religious scholar, nowadays that is an oxymoron and todays religious scholars of often talentless hacks too.

    Anyone interested in the plight of gifted adults https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mt9KI1g4nsE
    its an hour long podcast

    Unlocking the gifted from employment purgatory will change much, and the contribution could prove valuable in the brave new world in need to sustainability.

    How long could a body survive without enough good functioning t cells? Think disease, festering sores and eventually death. Or social unrest, climate events and looming apocalypse.

    How dare you!

  12. Well done Labour. I have seen job vacancy signs outside yards for the first time since 1978. An economy run for the workers is one where workers can pick and choose their employer which is surely the first job of a labour voted government. Now if owners want to increase profit they have to increase productivity by committing more capital to quality plant and better training. So keep the borders closed and remember the poverty. There are still 98,000 workers suffering the EVIL of unemployment and another 200,000 underemployed without full time work.

    • Maybe if the system had a positive influence on workers lives by improved choices and decisions, good quality food and media consumptions of the mind,, productivity would rise as a corollary of improved physical and mental health.
      The unemployed are the lower leaves on the plant that yellow and drop off first. Left unchecked the rest of the plant follows.

  13. Worth a look at this column in the Herald in regards the increase in the number of people on Job Seeker allowance versus the decline in the number of people on the unemployment benefit.

    Quote – “Five years ago, jobseeker numbers and unemployment numbers were pretty much the same, and now they begin to diverge,” Eaqub said.


    Are unemployment statistic figures “massaged” to suit a narrative? Hidden in the Job Seekers statistic?

    • Yup. The statistics from Stats NZ and the akshull MSD/WINZ quarterly reports do not relate to one another at all. Stats NZ figures are about as reliable as their own Census data.

      359,000 people in receipt of some kind of financial support is still 11.3%. How NZS can mangle the data to get to anything like they have is some kind of mathematical voodoo.

    • All it is doing is screwing over existing rental housing in favour of often unbuild developer housing which for the most part overseas investors can invest in. Screwing over existing rental housing, is one of the many reasons there is a huge shortage of exisiting rental accomodation.

      Sadly Labeen have zero understanding of what they are doing, and are encaptured by the neoliberal model, lobbyists and globalism giving them easy solutions, when it seems to be producing the opposite!

      Same happened in the UK. It is Thatcherism, selling/gifting off state and council housing, selling/gifting off state land, only to rent it back again at huge rates to the taxpayers and increase state rents while decreasing quality and availability of choice of rentals. The UK has stamp duty, AND capital gains taxes, is meaningless in global money, especially with the amount of loopholes for the super rich. (AKA the Blairs paid no stamp duty of their multimillion purchase, https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-58780559).

      NZ government are blowing apart the alternative space of private rentals, by making existing rentals less desirable to rent out than new builds.

      Who benefits, developers, speculators. (While driving up prices)

      Who loses, renters, next generation Kiwis. Social Democracy. The Environment. Councils.

  14. I thought the Aussies loved kiwi workers because their own are lazy and kiwis are hard workers. Aussie companies invest in technology and machinery to achieve higher production, they have too because their own workers are still useless, haha. Kiwi boss just hires the cheapest labour using the cheapest machinery often in crappy conditions using real old school systems and hopeless management, and guess what? Gee productivity is not too good, better blame the kiwi couch potatoe, because the manager is a moron.

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