The National Accounts have confirmed Australia is in the deepest recession of our lifetimes, with the economy experiencing the sharpest contraction on record.
It beggars belief that the worst recession since the Great Depression has not been enough for the Morrison Government to bring forward a proper jobs plan.
Australia’s 29-year run of uninterrupted growth has officially come to an end on Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg’s watch, and their lack of a jobs plan threatens the recovery.
A record one million workers are already unemployed and an additional 400,000 are set to join the jobless queues by Christmas.
In the middle of this jobs crisis, Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg have a plan to wind back JobKeeper, cut wages, cut super, freeze the pension, point the finger and shift the blame – but no plan for jobs.
Today’s data shows that the virus has turbocharged longstanding weaknesses in the economy under the Liberals and Nationals:
- Largest GDP contraction on record: GDP contracted by a record 7.0 per cent in the June quarter and a record 6.3 per cent over the year. This follows longstanding weakness in economic growth, which has been below trend in every quarter under Morrison.
- Private domestic economy still in reverse: Declined by 10.8 per cent in the quarter and is down 11.4 per cent over the year, and before the virus grew by a mere 0.3 per cent under Morrison.
- Consumption in freefall: Declined by 12.1 per cent in the quarter and is down 12.7 per cent over the year – the worst result on record – following persistently weak growth under Morrison.
- Business investment down again: Total private business investment fell 4.8 per cent in the quarter and is down 6.2 per cent over the year. Over 80 per cent of the fall in business investment under the Liberals occurred before the virus outbreak.
- Compensation of employees: Fell by a record 2.5 per cent in the June quarter, reflecting steep declines in employment and hours worked. This follows record low wages growth under the Liberals.
- Living standards plummeted: Real net national disposable income contracted by a record 8.0 per cent in the quarter to be down by a record 6.4 per cent over the year, following stagnant living standards before the virus outbreak .
The most important test of the Morrison Government’s management of the recession and its aftermath is what happens to jobs.
Only $85 billion of the claimed $314 billion of economic support has actually been delivered by the Government, and too many businesses and workers have been left out and left behind.
Morrison and Frydenberg’s failures on the economy are costing jobs, and their failures on aged care are costing lives.
Workers, businesses and communities need and deserve a plan from the Morrison Government to promote growth, protect and create jobs, support business and set Australia up for the recovery.
WEDNESDAY, 2 SEPTEMBER 2020