Consumer prices and wages in the twentieth century
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The purpose of this article is to provide a century-long perspective of prices and wages in Australia. Readers will be aware that over the twentieth century the purchasing power of money declined. They will also know that wages rose proportionately more than consumer prices, so that there was a substantial increase in real wages. This is an attempt to quantify these changes. The interrelation of prices and wages – for example, the extent to which price increases were caused by wage movements and vice versa – is a topic of much interest to economists and policy makers. I refrain from pursuing it in this article, which is essentially an attempt to present ‘facts’.