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6265.0 - Underemployed Workers, Australia, September 2013 Quality Declaration 
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 26/02/2014   
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26 February 2014
Embargoed: 11.30 am (Canberra time)

Underemployed Australians waiting longer for more work

The median duration of insufficient work of Australia's underemployed part-time workers increased to 30 weeks in 2013, from 26 weeks in 2012, according to an Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) report released today.

ABS Director of Labour Force and Supplementary Surveys, Stephen Collett said "The number of underemployed part-time workers wanting and available for more hours has increased to 2010 and 2011 levels. For younger workers (aged 15-19), the median duration of insufficient work increased to 26 weeks in 2013, up from 21 weeks in 2012. For those aged 35-44 it increased to 34 weeks in 2013, up from 30 weeks in 2012. Older workers are continuing to experience longer periods of underemployment, 40 weeks for those aged 45-54, and 52 weeks for those aged 55 and over."

The survey found there were many Australians working part-time who would prefer to work more hours.

"Just over a quarter (912,200) of part-time workers, stated they would prefer to work more hours, with over half of these (55 per cent) preferring to find full-time work (35 hours or more). Over half (58 per cent) would prefer to stay with their current employer, 27 per cent want a change and 15 per cent did not have a preference."

"The Underemployed Workers survey collected information in September 2013 about underemployed workers aged 15 years and over. The survey included information on the number of hours they usually worked, number of preferred hours, steps taken to find work with more hours and difficulties finding work with more hours,” said Mr Collett.

Further details can be found in Underemployed Workers, Australia (cat. no. 6265.0), available for free download from

Media Note: When reporting ABS data you must attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or the ABS) as the source.

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