Resident workers - Individual income quartiles

In Cairns, the 'medium lowest' quartile is the largest group, comprising 27% of the resident workers.

Individual Income is an indicator of socio-economic status, skills and occupations required in a particular industry. With other data sources, such as Qualifications and Occupation, it helps to evaluate the economic opportunities of people in an industry.

Income quartiles are used to condense income categories into manageable units, adjust for the effects of inflation, and allow areas to be compared over time relative to a benchmark. The incomes for the state are split into four equal groups, each containing 25% of the local labour force, and the quartiles allow users to compare changes in the local area to changes statewide, or against another benchmark. For more information on how quartiles are calculated please refer to the data notes.

As well as being related to the type of jobs and qualifications required in a particular industry, income levels can be related to the level of part-time employment, Occupations, Qualification and the Age structure of the local resident workers, so the data should be looked at in conjunction with these topics.

Data source

Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) – Census 2016 and 2021 – by usual residence

Select industry:
Current benchmark:
Resident workers individual income quartiles
Cairns - Persons20212016Change
Quartile groupNumber%. QueenslandNumber%. Queensland2016 - 2021
Lowest group19,94025.325.017,29824.325.0+2,643
Medium lowest21,18626.925.019,86527.925.0+1,321
Medium highest20,47226.025.018,38325.825.0+2,090
Highest group17,23021.925.015,66922.025.0+1,561
Total Persons78,829100.0100.071,214100.0100.0+7,615

Source: Derived from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Census of Population and Housing 2016 and 2021. Compiled and presented .id (informed decisions).

Please refer to specific data notes for more information
Quartile group dollar ranges (Individuals)
Quartile group dollar ranges (Individuals) Weekly income by Census year
Individual quartile ranges20212016
Lowest group$0 to $620$0 to $551
Medium lowest$621 to $980$552 to $883
Medium highest$981 to $1,515$884 to $1,355
Highest group$1,516 and over$1,356 and over
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Dominant groups

Income quartiles allow us to compare relative income-earning capabilities across time. Analysis of the distribution of the resident workers by income quartile in Cairns compared to Queensland shows that there was lesser proportion of persons in the highest income quartile, and a greater proportion in the lowest income quartile.

Emerging groups

The most significant change for the resident workers in Cairns between 2016 and 2021 was in the lowest group quartile which showed an increase of 2,643 resident.

Cairns Regional Council

economic profile