Almost a million Aussies are working more than one job


Switchers see savings of $1900, cut annual fuel costs by $1000, and almost 1 million Australians work multiple jobs. Here are five things you may have missed this week.

900,000 Aussies working multiple jobs

As wages grow at a snail's pace, research by Savvy shows 84% of Australians are worried their income won't keep pace with inflation.

almost a million aussies are working two jobs

The cash squeeze is seeing record numbers of workers take on a second job.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) says around 900,000 people worked more than one job in the June 2022 quarter - equal to about one in 15 workers, the highest rate since 1994.

Lauren Ford, head of labour statistics at the ABS, says, "The number of jobs worked as secondary jobs also increased, and passed one million for the first time. This highlights that some people work more than two jobs at the same time."

There can certainly be plenty of scope to land a second job with the ABS reporting a 14.3% jump in job vacancies in the June quarter, to a record high of 480,000 positions vacant - more than double the pre-pandemic figure.

A key downside of working multiple jobs (apart from exhaustion) is that the $18,200 tax-free threshold can usually only be claimed from one employer.

If you have a second job, the Australian Tax Office advises letting boss Number 2 know that tax needs to be withheld from your income at the higher 'no tax-free threshold' rate.

This could mean losing a bigger chunk of your second pay packet to tax, but it reduces the prospect of being lumbered with a tax debt when you lodge your next tax return.

Refinancers pocket annual savings of $1900

The latest PEXA Refinancer Sentiment research shows 1.04 million Australians have refinanced their home loan in the past year, and 2.28 million more are considering refinancing in the next two years.

Among recent refinancers, 55% stayed with their current lender, while 45% switched to a new lender.

The switchers pocketed the biggest gains, saving around $1908 annually on average - five times the $384 average yearly saving among those who stayed with their existing lender.

Potential fuel savings of $1000 annually

Sick of fueling around with high petrol prices? More hip pocket pain could be just days away.

The reinstatement of the full fuel excise is due to kick in from September 29, potentially adding 25.3 cents per litre to petrol prices according to the ACCC.

The Commonwealth Bank has responded by piloting a new Fuel finder feature in the CommBank app.

Fuel finder learns from a customer's fuel spending patterns to predict when they may need to refuel, then sends a reminder ahead of time, pointing out the cheapest servos in the surrounding area.

CBA's general manager of shopping, Rochelle Eldridge, says, "On any given day, fuel prices can fluctuate by up to 40 cents a litre - or $20 a tank - at stations within two kilometres of each other. That's a potential saving of $1000 a year for customers who are filling up weekly."

You don't need to be a CommBank customer to find good deals on fuel. Apps like Fuel Map Australia, MotorMouth and Petrol Spy Australia are all designed to help motorists drive savings on petrol.

Alleged 'home loan hoodwink' sparks possible class action

Shine Lawyers is investigating a possible class action on behalf of tens of thousands of homeowners who were sold mortgage protection insurance by Aussie Home Loans.

Shine describes the policies as a "home loan hoodwink" - touted as a kind of life insurance that would help cover mortgage repayments in the event of illness, job loss or death.

Shine alleges the mortgage protection cover was unnecessary given many customers may have already had similar and better cover, or because other cheaper policies were available.

Rebecca Jancauskas, Shine's class actions practice leader, says it was often first home buyers who were forced to hand over an extra $1000 or more a year to pay for the policies.

Shine is looking to speak with anybody who purchased a Mortgage Protection Policy from Aussie Home Loans from September 2016 onwards.

Older Australians embrace digital banking

Australians aged over 65 are just as keen on digital banking as the rest of the population.

That's according to a new study by ANZ and the University of South Australia, which found that 81% of over-65s use internet banking, and seven out of ten know how to protect their privacy online.

Almost half (45%) of the nation's over-65s still visit a bank branch compared to just 33% of those aged under-65. But beyond this, older Australians' use of digital banking is pretty much on par with the rest of the population.

ANZ Managing Director, Retail Banking, Kath Bray says, "Contrary to popular belief that older people are hesitant to use digital technologies, this research found most older people are able and willing to engage with the online environment."

Nonetheless, Bray notes, "Many of us are likely to experience age-related impairments as we get older, whether that be with our vision, hearing or mobility."

This was reflected in the report, which confirmed screens with small font sizes can present challenges to seniors.

This may contribute to only 26% of over-65s using mobile banking apps compared to 71% of under-65s.

Bray says the report will be used to help create better banking solutions for older Australians.

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A former Chartered Accountant, Nicola Field has been a regular contributor to Money for 20 years, and writes on personal finance issues for some of Australia's largest financial institutions. She is the author of Investing in Your Child's Future and Baby or Bust, and has collaborated with Paul Clitheroe on a variety of projects including radio scripts, newspaper columns, and several books.