withdrawing super unemployed
(Image: AAP/Dan Peled)

I spend a lot of time communicating economic facts. The one the causes the most trouble is the unemployment rate. People HATE it.

They hate the fact that under the statistical definition promulgated by the International Labour Organisation you need only work one hour a week to be counted as employed and they hate that it is measured by a survey.

People hate doing surveys and so distrust the output of surveys. “Why not just count up the people on the dole?” people ask me in an infuriated tone, inferring more often than not that the Bureau of Statistics is in the pocket of Big Lies, and that the choice of a survey is a way to hide the true unemployment rate.