Interest rate increases worsen cost-of-living crisis

Interest rate increases worsen cost-of-living crisis

The interest rate rise of 0.5 per cent, which brings the cash rate to 1.85 per cent, announced today by the Reserve Bank of Australia will worsen the cost-of-living crisis for workers. 

Today’s rise will add another $130 a month onto repayments for someone with a $500,000 mortgage.  

Workers are bearing the brunt of the cost-of-living crisis, and the RBA’s approach towards fixing inflation through raising interest rates burdens them the most and ignores the fact that big businesses passing on costs while raking in record profits is a key inflationary pressure.  

Corporate greed, previous Coalition Governments attacks on workers' rights, and a broken and dated bargaining system have led to workers' wages going backward for almost a decade – workers now have the lowest share of GDP in recorded Australian history. 

With inflation expected to reach 7.75 per cent by the end of the year, reform to our bargaining laws to deliver pay rises is urgent.  

Quotes attributable to ACTU Secretary Sally McManus: 

“With today’s interest rate decision, workers have now been saddled an extra $500 a month in mortgage repayments in the last 90 days. The RBA’s aggressive approach to fixing inflation is hurting workers, who are already facing the brunt of the cost-of-living crisis and ignores the record profiteering of big businesses that are a key driver of inflation.  

“Economic recovery relies on workers having enough money to spend, and continuously raising interest rates while allowing record profiteering business to go responsibility free will be detrimental for all Australians.  

“Almost a decade of attacks on workers' wages by previous Coalition Governments and a dated and broken bargaining system has led to workers now having the lowest share of GDP in Australian history. Reform of our bargaining laws to deliver wage growth is urgent. This is the lever the Government has at their disposal to rescue a generation of Australians from lower living standards. 

“Big businesses have been running a scare campaign against wage increases saying they will induce a wage-inflation spiral – which is utterly false. There is no evidence of this. The real risk from today’s decision is damaging the economy, jobs and living standards.”