Underemployment in Australia: Evidence from the HILDA Survey

R Wilkins

Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research | Published : 2004


Underemployment is generally conceived as excess labour supply associated with employed persons – that is, as a situation where employed persons would like to work more hours at prevailing wage rates. Using information collected by the 2001 Household Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey, this study seeks to investigate the extent of underemployment, its effects on outcomes such as income, welfare dependence and subjective well-being, and the factors associated with underemployment. It is found that over one in six employed persons is underemployed, corresponding to a failure to utilise 5 per cent of hours supplied by employed persons. Underemployment is more frequently ass..

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