Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Aucklanders' average pay now NZ$1135 per week---just what does that mean?

It was reported in the NZ Herald that the average pay for Aucklanders is now $1135 per week. That sounds like a lot of money in NZ terms but there are a few things to consider before you all clap your hands in glee as we also hear reports that unemployment is significantly down.
Firstly,’ average’ can be a very misleading term. It is slanted by the fact that top incomes are included and those numbers skewer the figures to make them appear unreasonably optimistic. There are many people earning well below that figure and it is in this group that the announcement held little in the way of hope. For those in the hospitality, food and beverage and caring industries, along with other occupational groups, the figure are all but a lie. Yes, cold hard facts can be interpreted to make the scene far rosier than it actually is.
Take the higher cost of housing and transport, just to mention two factors re living in Auckland and combine that with the above extrapolation and you get a more realistic picture about what it is likely for so many people living in Auckland. Their chance of ever owning their own homes is poor at best.
So, before the Government begins its inevitable crowing re these figures, just take a breath and have some thought for the reality so many Aucklanders face every day. For those who don’t care about Aucklanders, just remember how deeply they stuck their hands into their pockets when it came to helping those in the southern city that ‘shook’ so badly.
Figures and statistics be dammed. Tell the truth, but yes, be hopeful for a better future.