How many jobs?

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Australia unfortunately has nothing similar to the excellent political fact checking websites that the US has. Probably not though because of a lack of supply of political fibs, just a lack of demand.

Simon Crean committed an absolute howler this morning. On Radio National Breakfast, Crean told Fran Kelly that:

Bear this in mind, 700,000 jobs have been created over the last four years, 100,000 more than John Howard’s last four years and we did it with a global recession …

Crean is right that 700,000 jobs have been created in the past 10 years, but the last four years of the Howard government saw over 1.1 million jobs created. Crean was only 500,000 jobs out!

See the chart below. Full data available here.



  1. I suspect Crean’s on solid ground – albeit of the lies and damn lies variety. Your graph refers to the change in employment – jobs added minus jobs subtracted. If you only consider the jobs added part of the equation, Crean may be correct. This would fit into the category broadly headed, “True but irrelevant.” I’m more interested in net jobs. And I’d be more than surprised if WorkChoices had anything to do with net job creation except at the margins.

  2. What’s extraordinary is Australia lost jobs last year for the first time in a decade, a year when most economists were telling us we were in midst of a once-in-a-century boom and demanding multiple rate hikes.

    Isn’t this mining boom just fabulous!

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