Archive for February, 2022

Tips That Will Help You Take Better Care of Your Financial Wellbeing

Posted by Emily Ridley

Making an effort to take better care of your financial wellbeing is a highly valuable choice that every Australia should make regardless of their current financial situation or bank account balance. Here are some ideas to take into consideration when planning your financial future.

Start Investing

Investing is one of the most valuable ways to build your wealth. Although making an effort to learn how to invest properly can be time consuming, finding that time to learn might turn out to be one of the best decisions you could make for your long-term finances. 

Although it is possible to invest without the help of an advisor, many Australians are choosing to seek the guidance of an advisor route because it makes the process of learning how to invest much easier. Remember that advisors also include robo-advisors, which can help you decide what to invest in including when to buy and sell.

Pay Off Your Credit Card Debt

If credit card debt is holding you back from financial success, then it would be a fantastic idea to make an effort to tackle it in the new year? 

Paying off your credit card debt is a significant step in the right direction if you aspire to become more financially healthy. If you don’t pay it off, you are doing a serious disservice to your credit score. 

When searching for ways to pay off your debt, It is strongly recommended opening a balance transfer credit card. Although it may sound counterproductive on one hand, these cards can help you consolidate your debt and even stop it from collecting interest for a period of time.

Create A Will

It would be easy to assume that a will is something that only old people create. If you don’t have a will already, making it one of your New Year’s resolutions could benefit you and your family. If you suddenly die unexpectedly trying to determine who takes ownership of your property and your assets could turn out to be a very messy situation that could have easily been avoided if you had a will in place.

Having a will in place is an easy way to protect your assets and ensure that your spouse, children and family members are given peace of mind.

Spend Less Money

Everyone aspires to save money. One of the best ways to reduce the amount of money you spend is consciously be aware of how much you are spending. It advised that you take a close look at your budget. Little things such as; making coffee at home instead of ordering from a café, bringing your lunch to work, cutting back on monthly subscriptions and writing a more strategic grocery shopping list where you only buy items that are on your list.

Establish An Emergency Fund

Whenever an emergency happens, you don’t want to be stuck without an emergency fund. Emergency funds can be lifesavers when unexpected challenges occur in your life, such as; losing your job or getting into a car accident or the fall out of the covid-19 pandemic. 

If your emergency fund is non-existent at the start of the new year, it is time to change that.

To begin with, you should decide how much money you need in your emergency fund by calculating your monthly expenses. This should include not only your rent or mortgage but also your utilities and your basic expenses. Many financial experts agree that this should be at least three to six months’ worth of expenses, but it can’t hurt to overestimate how much money you would need in times of emergency.

9,000 Tourism Jobs Have Been Lost In Cairns During The Covid-19 Pandemic

Posted by Emily Ridley

It has been reported that 9,000 tourism jobs have been lost in Cairns since the start of the covid-19. The total number of lost jobs make up for half of the local industry’s workforce.

Prior to the covid-19 pandemic the tourism industry in the Cairns region was more 2.5 billion annually.

Mark Olsen the chief executive of Tourism Tropical North Queensland has said that the regions tourism industry employed 15,750 full and parttime works before the covid-19 pandemic began.

However, as a result of the discontinuation of the federal government’s JobKeeper program, many workers have had no choice but to leave the tourism industry for good in hopes of finding a higher paying and more reliable job.

“Without international visitation, we’ve lost about 9,000 staff over the last 22 months. At first it was the frontline staff, those on the part-time and casual roles, but as the pandemic extended on, we started losing highly skilled staff,” says Mark Olsen the chief executive of Tourism Tropical North Queensland.

“Even in the last few weeks, we’ve seen businesses have to stand down some of their most senior staff because the cash flow is so tight. We’ve lost a lot of skill and experience that has guided the region, which has been one of the most successful tourism destinations, over the last 30 years,” continued Mr. Olsen.

On Saturday 22nd January, the Queensland Government introduced quarantine-free international travel for fully-vaccinated tourists who were wanting to visit Queensland.

However, it is expected that a huge influx of international tourists will not become a common occurrence for at least the next few months. This is due to the Australian Government’s decision to limit the number of overseas arrivals to mainly just to returning Australian residents, working visa holidays and international students.

Cairns restaurant owner Craig Squire says that the recent Christmas holiday period wasn’t very busy for his business as he had a number of workers unable to work due to covid-19.

“The first week of January, we had five staff out waiting on test results, so that really put a dampener on what would have been a quite a successful trading week. We had to close for several days because we just didn’t have enough staff to operate the business. It’s been a terrible January, there’s big losses,” says Craig Squire.

Mr. Squire has highlighted that the vaccination mandate has been frustrating to enforce and having to turn away unvaccinated customers has meant that he has lost even more money.

“The concept that the unvaccinated can’t go to restaurants and cafes but can go to gyms and hairdressers and food courts, even licensed food courts, it just doesn’t stick. It basically started as a coercive measure to get more people vaccinated, we’re at 90 percent fully vaccinated in Cairns now so surely, we can let go of that. It’s not stopping the spread of covid,” says Cairns restaurant owner Craig Squire.

Restaurants Across Australia Are Fighting Over Workers To Keep Their Businesses Running

Some restaurants across Australia have resorted in poaching workers from rival hospitality venues by offering them a higher pay rise to keep their business operating. Furthermore, a number of hospitality establishments across Australia have been forced to close temporarily for the first time since the beginning of the covid-19 pandemic.

The fast-spreading Omicron variant has left many industries, especially the hospitality industry in economic disarray as thousands of workers have either tested positive to covid-19 or been required to isolate as a result of being a close contact of a positive case.

A trickle of international students and temporary workers back into the country after border closures has also exacerbated staff shortages for a number of businesses, while others that manage to stay open are operating on a knife edge.

For a number of venues who have been had a large percentage of their employees being unavailable to work due to covid-19 isolation requirements, the trading hours of many hospitality venues is dependent on how many people are available to work at that given time of day or night.

Furthermore, many hospitality venues are noticing an increase in rude customers who are complaining about the wait times for them to receive their meals as there are less employees available to work in the kitchen. As a result of this meals are taking longer than usual to be made for customers.

“That’s why I always ask the customers before they order food if they don’t mind waiting as we catch up with orders due to staff shortages. Please be kind with the hospitality industry right now. We are trying our best to serve you,” says Hana Tania, owner of Indonesian restaurant Ayam Ria Penyet.

Hana Tania reveals that some restaurants had also resorted to poaching staff with offers of better pay.

“Let’s say we were already offering a rate based on the standard award, but a fine-dining restaurant could offer them $35 an hour to wash dishes. Many restaurant owners that I know told me that they can’t compete with them. A couple of restaurant owners have even offered to give their staff a few hundred bucks extra if they can refer and bring their friends to work,” says Hana Tania.

245,600 Jobs Across Australia Were Advertised Online in December 2021

Posted by Emily Ridley

The current demand for jobs in farming, animal and planet specialists is at a record high in Australia. CommSec senior economist Ryan Felsman outlined that the unusually high summer rainfall in regional areas had boosted employment openings.

‘With the end of the drought, significant rainfall, improved seasonal growing conditions, elevated soft commodity prices and strong global demand for food and beverages, demand for farmers, skilled animal and horticultural workers have all surged with job ads at record highs, says CommSec senior economist Ryan Felsman.

There were over 250 farmer related jobs advertised on the internet last month. This is a record for jobs advertised online since stats were first complied in January 2006.

Records were also set for skilled animal and horticultural workers with 1,606 jobs advertised, and jewellers, arts and other trades 1,157 jobs advertised.

Australian workers are also needed to care for others, with the current demand at record levels for health and welfare support workers at 2,095 ads and carers and aides with 11,905 ads.

The hospitality sector is also in desperate need of staff with 9,847 ads for hospitality workers and another 3,462 jobs currently available for food preparation assistants.

The major reason for so many new job positions being advertised is because restaurants and cafes had hired staff since the Delta outbreak lockdowns, and consumers began to show more desire to dine out again despite the spread of Omicron.

“’Australia’s labour market is tightening, despite recent disruptions caused by the surge in Covid-19 Omicron virus variant infections,” says Ryan Felsman.

In December 2021, 245,600 jobs were advertised online, marking a 46 percent increase when compared with the number of jobs advertised in February 2020 before the pandemic. 

In 2021, job advertisements climbed by 37.4 percent or 66,900, with the Nationals Skills Commission compiling data from employment site Seek. 

Australia’s Unemployment Rate Drops to The Lowest Level Since 2008

The unemployment rate in Australia has surprisingly dropped to 4.2 percent in December 2021 from the figures of 4.6 percent recorded in the previous month. The drop means that Australia is currently experiencing it’s lowest recorded levels of unemployment since 2008.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) revealed that 64,800 people joined the workforce in December 2021 in a further recovery from last year’s Covid-19 lockdowns in NSW, Victoria and the ACT.

“Recovery in NSW and Victoria continued to have a large influence on the national figures, with employment in these two states increasing by 32,000 and 25,000 people between November and December,” says ABS head of labour statistics Bjorn Jarvis.

These figures takes employment back to where it was in May 2021 for these two states.

Bjorn Jarvis said the latest report provides an indication of the state of the labour market in the first two weeks of December, before the large increase in virus cases later in the month.

BIS Oxford Economics chief economist Sarah Hunter believes that based on the economic experiences of overseas nations it is suggested that the impact of the Omicron variant will be significant but short-lived, and less economically damaging than previous waves.

“Overall, the unemployment rate is set to remain below 4.5 per cent this year, and with businesses still looking to add staff this will create further upward pressure on wages and domestic inflationary pressure. Today’s data reinforces our view that the RBA will tighten the cash rate much earlier than they are currently signalling,” says Sarah Hunter.

4.2 percent is the lowest since August 2008 which was recorded just prior to the start of the global financial crisis when records were 4.0 percent.

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