New Consumer Census Data Released
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Australians are earning more money, 37% have broadband and the median household income in Australia last year was $1000 – $1199 per week, up from the 1996 median of $600 – $699. However, Australians are now less likely to own their own home outright and more of them are paying one off.

Hinduism is growing and women do more chores than men. The latest data from the 2006 census, released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), also confirms we’re ageing as a nation. In 2006, 33 per cent of homes were fully owned, down from 41 per cent, and almost one-third were still being purchased, up from one-quarter.

Rented properties accounted for 27 per cent. New census questions reveal just over 37 per cent of Australians questioned during the census had broadband internet, while about 20 per cent had dial-up. In the home, the average Australian woman does between five and 14 hours of domestic work, compared with the average man, who does less than five hours.

More than one-third of women reported doing more than 15 hours of unpaid chores per week, compared with 12 per cent of men.

One in 25 Australians needs daily help with basic activities such as self-care, moving around or communicating. Almost one in five Australians performed voluntary work in a year.

Australia’s median age rose from 34 to 37 years in 2006 and the share of the population aged 65 and over increased from 12.1 per cent to 13.3 per cent.

For every 100 women in Australia, there are 97 men. Marriage is still the norm for couples, although married couples now account for a lower share of the population than they did in 1996 – down from 53.3 per cent to 49.6 per cent.

The number of followers of Hinduism has more than doubled since 1996, now covering 0.7 per cent of the population. Followers of Buddhism also doubled to more than 2 per cent of the population.Islam accounts for 1.7 per cent and Judaism 0.4 per cent.

Christianity remains the dominant religion. It grew slightly, from 12.6 million followers to 12.7 million but fell as a proportion of the population from 71 per cent to 64 per cent.

Almost 19 per cent of Australians said they had no religion. The number of young people living with their parents grew by 8 per cent and the number of students dependent on their parents rose by 14 per cent.

In 2006, 59 per cent of all 15-24 year-olds lived with their parents. More school students now attend private schools, 35 per cent, compared to 30 per cent in 1996.

The census counted 19,855,289 Australian residents on August 8 last year. This differs from the ABS estimate of 20,701,500, which took into account Australians who were temporarily overseas.