National wellbeing falls three quarters in a row as women over 50 thrive

More than one third of Australians reported very high levels of anxiety and overall wellbeing fell nationally in the quarter ended 30 June according to research by the National Australia Bank.

Results of the latest NAB Wellbeing Index showed Australia’s wellbeing for the June quarter 2016 fell across all measures – life satisfaction, life worth, happiness and anxiety.

The report, released Thursday, found national wellbeing had fallen to 63.6 (where 0 is the lowest and 100 the highest) in Q2 compared to 64 in Q1.

Women aged 50 years or more defied the national trend, with the demographic collectively reporting the highest level of overall personal wellbeing, while those not in a relationship reported the lowest level.

Low income earners are among those with the lowest levels of wellbeing in Australia and also report very low levels of connections to their local communities.

NAB Chief Economist Alan Oster said that access to quality local jobs and housing affordability were most commonly cited as the way to improve wellbeing within their local communities.

“Housing affordability has jumped ahead of safety and law and order as the second highest on the wish list,” Mr Oster said.

Relationships with family and friends remained the greatest positive influence on wellbeing – however this had fallen significantly since the previous report.

Overall wellbeing by demographic:

  Highest overall wellbeing Lowest overall wellbeing
Age and gender ·         Women over 50 ·         Women aged 18 – 29
State ·         SA and NT ·         TAS
Location ·         Capital city ·         Regional city
Income ·         Above $100k p/a ·         Below $35,000 p/a
Relationship status ·         Widowed ·         Single
Household size ·         Two people ·         Three or more people
Education level ·         Bachelor/postgrad ·         Vocational
Family ·         No children ·         Have children
Employment ·         Not employed ·         Part time worker
Profession ·         Professional ·         Labourer


About the NAB Quarterly Australian Wellbeing Index

The NAB Quarterly Australian Wellbeing Index was launched in April 2013 in conjunction with the NAB Quarterly Australian Consumer Anxiety Index with the aim of assessing perceptions of wellbeing and consumer stress.

Subjective wellbeing measures can play an important role in supplementing traditional economic measures of national income and activity. The NAB Australian Wellbeing Index provides a snapshot of how more than 2,000 Australians perceive their own lives based on life satisfaction, life worth, happiness and anxiety.

The NAB Wellbeing Index is complemented by the NAB Consumer Anxiety Index which provides a subjective assessment of over 2,000 Australian’s own concerns about their future spending/savings plans arising from job security, health, retirement, cost of living and government policy.


Read the full report here.



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