Australia's federal industrial tribunal, the Fair Work Commission, published its annual wage review decision on, June 4, 2014.

The decision provides that minimum award wages will increase across the board by three percent effective 1 July 2014. This increase is slightly higher than the increase awarded in 2013 for the prior financial year (2.6 percent).

This decision will result in the following increases to the Federal minimum wage rates:

  • Weekly minimum wage: from AUD622.20 to AUD640.90 (increase of AUD18.70)
  • Hourly minimum rate: from AUD16.37 to AUD16.87 (increase of 50c)

Otherwise, the percentage increase will apply to the minimum rates of pay contained in awards. Increases to minimum weekly wages will be rounded to the nearest 10 cents.

A casual loading of 25 per cent for award/agreement free employees will also apply from 1 July 2014 (an increase of one percent from last year's casual loading for award/agreement free employees).

Overall, the Commission found that the moderate increase in minimum wages was justified given the sound performance and outlook of Australia's economy.

The minimum superannuation guarantee charge rate will also increase from 9.25 percent to 9.5 percent on July 1, 2014.

Employers should now start to review their employees' existing rates of pay and superannuation to ensure compliance with minimum rates when the above changes commence on July 1, 2014.