Australia uses decimal currency after abandoning the
confusing old English system of pounds shillings and pence.
Decimal currency was introduced on February 14th 1966. It was not until 1985
that the $100 note was introduced.
1c and 2c coins were phased out and $1 and
$2 notes became coins.
Coins range from 5c 10c 20c 50c $1 and $2. The $1 and $2 coins are gold in
colour while the rest are silver. 1c 2c coins and $1 and $2 notes are no longer
Bank notes range from $5 $10 $20 $50 and $100 they are all now made of a polymer
material that was supposed to foil would be counterfeiters. It didn't take too
long for that illusion to be shattered.
While on the subject of money the town with the highest median weekly wage is…
no not Perth, it's Wiluna
with $897 a week. Perth at $531 comes in at 13th behind towns like
Leonora $861, Sandstone
$845, Yalgoo $765, Cue $746,
Laverton $707, Meekatharra
$652 and others. We suspect with the booming iron ore market
in the Pilbara that Karratha and
Port Hedland as well as other mining towns now
feature high on this list as well.
The poorest towns in the state? Well at bottom of the heap are
Halls Creek $198, Murchison $197 and Ngaanyatjarraku
with a paltry $150.
The difference between rich and poor has always been substantial and an
interesting comparison from the early days shows indentured servants earning
three pounds a year while those at the top levels of government making 200-400
pounds a year.
The Master & Servant Act of 1842 made sure that employers could severely punish
any employee who left their service and even have them thrown in prison. When it
came to workers getting their just entitlements it was quite another story. Most
were illiterate and few had the resources to take their employers to court. From
1833 one third of an employees wages could be made up of rum and this gave
employers a great opportunity to cheat employees by overvaluing the alcohol.
Conditions did not start to improve for most workers until 1892.