Research from the Productivity Commission (PC) found the income of Australians currently aged between 15 and 24 have similar disposable incomes to people the same age in 2001. 

Between 2008 and 2015, incomes for this group fell by an average annual rate of 1.6%, while for those between 25 and 34, incomes fell by an average of 0.6% per year. 

In contrast, people aged between 35 and 64 saw their incomes increase by an average of 1.4% per year, while the average annual rate of increase for retirees and people older than 65 was 3.2%. 

Need somewhere to store cash and earn interest? The table below features introductory savings accounts with some of the highest interest rates on the market.

Provider

4000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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  • Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening
  • No account keeping fees
  • No minimum balance

High Interest Savings Account (< $250k)

  • Bonus rate for the first 4 months from account opening
  • No account keeping fees
  • No minimum balance
4000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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  • A high-interest online savings account with no monthly fees, easy withdrawals and award-winning digital banking
  • No withdrawal notice periods or interest rate penalties

Savings Account (Amounts < $250k)

  • A high-interest online savings account with no monthly fees, easy withdrawals and award-winning digital banking
  • No withdrawal notice periods or interest rate penalties
02000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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No monthly fees
  • Download the App to open your account
  • Get better visibility of your spending within App!
  • Deposit $200 per month to activate bonus interest
No monthly fees

Save Account

  • Download the App to open your account
  • Get better visibility of your spending within App!
  • Deposit $200 per month to activate bonus interest
020000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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HomeME Savings Account ($0 - $100,000)

    02001$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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    Growth Saver ($1 - $25k)

      010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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      For customers aged 14-35 years
      For customers aged 14-35 years

      Future Saver Account ( < $50k)

        05001$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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        • Maximum Age - 24

        Goal Saver

        • Maximum Age - 24
        010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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        Boost Saver

          00.011$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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          Reward Saver Account (31 years +) ($0-$100k)

            01000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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            Bonus Saver Account (Amounts < $100k)

              0201$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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              Reward Saver Kick Start (Amounts ≤ $1m)

                00.010$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                Life (< 30 years) (Monthly deposit)

                  5000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                  NetBank Saver

                    000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                    ANZ Save

                      010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                      Savings Maximiser (<$100k)

                        050$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                        Young Saver Account

                          0501$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                          Save up

                            010000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                            • Earn up to 5.40% pa by depositing $1,000 in the previous month
                            • No account fees
                            • Easy access to your money

                            Saver Account (<$250k)

                            • Earn up to 5.40% pa by depositing $1,000 in the previous month
                            • No account fees
                            • Easy access to your money
                            02000$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
                            More details

                            Bonus Saver (<$1 Million)

                              0100$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]$product[$field["value"]]
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                              Smart Saver Account (Under 25)

                                Important Information and Comparison Rate Warning

                                All products with a link to a product provider’s website have a commercial marketing relationship between us and these providers. These products may appear prominently and first within the search tables regardless of their attributes and may include products marked as promoted, featured or sponsored. The link to a product provider’s website will allow you to get more information or apply for the product. By de-selecting “Show online partners only” additional non-commercialised products may be displayed and re-sorted at the top of the table. For more information on how we’ve selected these “Sponsored”, “Featured” and “Promoted” products, the products we compare, how we make money, and other important information about our service, please click here. Rates correct as of April 21, 2024. View disclaimer.

                                PC Commissioner Catherine de Fontenay said the COVID-19 pandemic threatened to further increase this generational wage growth gap.

                                "Young people have experienced a ‘lost decade’ of income growth. This means they entered the COVID-19 crisis already on lower wages and usually with limited savings,” Ms de Fontenay said.

                                “Young people face discouraging prospects in a tough job market; and there is a danger they will simply give up on their aspirations as they take positions further down the jobs ladder."

                                Statistics suggest young people have been worst affected by job losses since the start of the crisis.

                                There were over 300,000 job losses among under 35 year olds since the start of the year, with an unemployment rate of 13.9% in June for 20-24 year olds.

                                In comparison, the unemployment rate for 35-44 year olds lifted by 1.4% in June to 5.4%. 

                                Ms de Fontenay said there was a stark contrast between the two age groups.

                                “It turns out that the ‘low wage growth’ story is essentially a story about people under 35. If we look at average wage growth for those over 35, it hasn’t slowed.”

                                Average annual growth in real disposable incomes by age

                                pcyoung2

                                Source: Productivity Commission

                                The report found the more competitive labour market post-Global Financial Crisis (GFC) affected young people the most, with companies offering lower starting wages and younger workers turning to jobs which didn't utilise their qualifications, as well as part-time work. 

                                Ms de Fontenay said this led to long term unemployment and underemployment.

                                “The rise of part-time work meant that we did not see a large increase in unemployment, but many young people wanted to work more hours,” she said. 

                                At the same time eligibility for government support schemes like Youth Allowance and Family Tax Benefits was tightened.

                                Futhermore, these payments aren't indexed to inflation like the Age Pension and as a result, have not grown in line with prices. 

                                The effect of all of the above has meant young people have turned to the Bank of Mum and Dad, and stayed at home for longer.

                                However, Ms de Fontenay said this has only been a viable solution for middle and high income families. 

                                “While these intra family transfers have helped cushion the fall in young people’s income, they have not been possible for all families, especially low income families,” she said.

                                Long term scarring in labour market 

                                In a separate report released on Monday, the PC found the pandemic would scar employment prospects of young people for decades, and they would have to take on lower-paid and lower-quality jobs as a result. 

                                Looking at the decade following the GFC, young people had far worse job outcomes than their older counterparts. 

                                The report found COVID-19 would prove even worse than this period. 

                                "Many young workers could face long-term consequences in the form of occupations lower on the jobs ladder and lower salaries than they might have expected in the early part of the century," it said.

                                "While young people's career prospects might have recovered once the labour market improved, such improvement is now unlikely for some time given the COVID-19 crisis.

                                "The fact that the weak labour market lasted for a decade means that many young workers will face long-term scarring."