Key economic indicators down and retail trade figures flat
The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) said the ABS August Retail Trade figures released today show a meager 0.3 percent growth in retail trade.
ARA Executive Director Russell Zimmerman said other key economic indicators were released today pointing to concerns with several parts of the Australian economy.
“The October 2010 ACCI Survey of Investor Confidence today shows deterioration in business conditions and dented business confidence over the September quarter. The AIG/Commonwealth Bank Australian Performance of Services Index fell 1.9 points in the month to 45.6 (readings below 50 indicate a contraction in activity).
“Add today’s August retail trade minor growth and we can draw a variety of contributing factors to economic weakness including political uncertainty, concerns about the global economy, the prospect of higher interest rates and a general lowering of business and consumer confidence.
“August retail trade figures confirm the end of a very soft winter for retailers with cafes and restaurants still propping up the sector. Fashion retailers are suffering heavily as they have all year and are hoping for a stronger period of growth leading into the vital Christmas trading period in from mid November,” Zimmerman said.
YEAR-ON-YEAR RETAIL GROWTH BY CATEGORY (August 2009 – August 2010)
Clothing, Footwear & Personal Accessory Retailing (0.0%), Department Stores (-0.4%) Cafes, Restaurants & Takeaways (15.1%), Other Retailing (6.5%), Food Retailing (2.3%) and Household Goods Retailing (0.9%)
“When we look at year-on-year growth, August trade is up 3.8 percent from the same time in 2009 but this is also propped up by cafés, restaurants and takeaways up 15.1 percent from last year,” Zimmerman said.
MONTHLY RETAIL GROWTH BY STATE AND TERRITORY (July 2010 – August 2010)
New South Wales (0.7%), Western Australia (1.1%) and Australian Capital Territory (0.7%) recorded the largest seasonally adjusted increases in August, followed by South Australia (0.1%) and Tasmania (0.2%). Sales in Victoria (-0.2%), Queensland (-0.1%) and Northern Territory (-0.5%) decreased in August.
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