Monday, January 28, 2013


Did you know that the minimum wage in Australia is $15.50/hour, USD? 

We have the highest minimum wage in the country here in Washington State, at $9.19/hour, USD. 

Australia has an unemployment rate of 4.9%, compared to the current US rate of around 9%. 

This comes into play with farm labor.  Many farm jobs, particularly piece work, don't pay well at all.  It's odd that a country like australia can pay so much when that sort of wage would, according to many people in the US, kill jobs and collapse businesses. 

Henry Ford, who did quite well, said this about wages: 

"There is one rule for the industrialist and that is: Make the best quality of goods possible at the lowest cost possible, paying the highest wages possible. "
Henry Ford

We seem to have forgotten the last sentence in our rush to the bottom of the wage scale.   Corporate profits are at an all-time high right now.  Perhaps we shouldn't be arguing about tax rates so much as profit rates, and perhaps even sending some of those profits to the folks who are doing the work. 

Check your states minimum wage here
Article about Australias minimum wage here


brentcu said...

Two extra details - youth wages and currency variations.

1) Apprentice and youth wages are lower, e.g. Here is the Western Australia farm award:

2) The exchange rate has changed a fair bit. Back in 2009 it was at US60c for the Aussie dollar, now it is US$1.05. Before that it was between .65 and .75 for quite a while IIRC. You are picking a country with a very strong currency at the moment for your comparison.

Also, given that farms are often way out in the middle of nowhere they take cash out of your salary for room and board, or at least they did when I worked in NSW back in the 80s. There wasn't much left, but then again there wasn't much to spend it on.

Here in France the minimum wage is eight Euros something, but when you add in the healthcare charges and such the cost to the employer is fifteen Euros something. Convert that at US$1.34 to the Euro...

becky3086 said...

The problem is that people here want to pay the least amount for their goods but want to get paid the most for their work. You can't have it both ways.