Below trend growth to continue
Beyond GDP: Insights into wellbeing, and the role money and finances play in our lives.
Australia’s wellbeing inches up, but 1 in 3 Australians report high levels of anxiety with cost of living among the biggest causes of stress. Overall, household financial stress fell slightly, but more Australians believe they will be worse off in 12 months’ time. Debt stress is up slightly but is notably higher for pay day loans with over $6,000 on average outstanding.
The NAB Australian Wellbeing Index inched up to 65.2 pts in Q3 (64.9 pts in Q2) and continues to trend slightly above the survey average (64.5 pts). Australians however reported modest deteriorations in their perceptions of their life worth, life satisfaction and happiness, but were noticeably less anxious.
Wellbeing is highest in TAS and QLD and lowest in VIC. Australians living in rural areas have the highest wellbeing, marginally ahead of those in capital and regional cities. This was mainly driven by much lower levels of anxiety. Overall, wellbeing remains highest in the over 65 age group but has eased. Older Australians continue to report much higher wellbeing for all measures, particularly anxiety when compared with younger people. Other ‘high’ wellbeing groups include higher income earners, retirees, widows, married people, and homeowners. House owners report higher wellbeing scores than do apartment owners for all measures and are much less anxious. Wellbeing remains lowest among the unemployed, lower income earners and young women.
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