In news that will surprise precisely nobody who paid $5.50 for a latte this morning or put a second mortgage on their house to reach the CBD via public transport, Australia has been confirmed as the most expensive G20 economy in the world. A new study by the World Bank shows that the prices for goods and services in Australia are on par with those of European countries like Denmark, Norway and Sweden.
Economists at the World Bank pointed to a number of factors that have pushed prices up in Australia, including that old chestnut the mining boom, as well as high exchange rate, major industries dominated by a small number of sellers, low unemployment, high labour costs, and the country’s current 22-year streak of unbroken economic growth. Of the 177 countries measured overall, we came out fourth.
Australia may be expensive, but according to a recent OECD study, we also rate our quality of life pretty highly. The ‘How’s Life?’ report shows that our minimum wage is the highest in the developed world, and that we rank above the OECD average in areas such as health status, housing, personal security, jobs, earnings education and skills. We rank at the very top in terms of civic engagement, so keep those #QandA Tweets coming.
If your poor work-life balance is driving you to drink, but a $25 whiskey-based nightmare of a cocktail from your local hipster dive bar is a bit out of your price range, there’s always your old friend Mr. Goon Bag to fall back on. ‘Straya!
Picture: Brendon Thorne via Getty Images