GDP, Unemployment and Inflation

Task 1 [100 marks]
Go to the latest labour market figures on the Australian Bureau of Statistics website (6202.0 – Labour Force, Australia ), and use that data to answer the following questions. You only need to use the data in the “Key Figures” table. Please use the seasonally-adjusted numbers, since these are the ones usually referred to in the media and used by economic analysts.
a) Calculate the size of the labour force, and show your working. [10 marks]
b) Show how the unemployment rate is calculated from the numbers of people. [10 marks]
c) Use the numbers in the table to calculate the working age population, and show how you calculated this from the other numbers. [16 marks] (Don’t look for this information elsewhere – you must show how you have calculated it using the numbers in the table.)
d) Explain what ‘seasonally adjusted’ means, and why we might want to look at seasonally adjusted data instead of data that is not seasonally adjusted. [24 marks]
e) Explain briefly two reasons that the unemployment rate might underestimate the weakness in the labour market. [16 marks]
f) Should the target for the unemployment rate be 0%? Why or why not? [24 marks]
Grading Note:
For parts a) to c) you will receive full marks if you correctly show all aspects of your answer. Parts d) to f) will be evaluated on the overall quality of your response. We expect only around one paragraph for each of parts d) to f).

Sample Solution