Restaurants experience strongest February sales

Posted by Josette Dunn on 1st April 2010

The latest ABS retail trade figures show that sales in February fell 1.4%, seasonally adjusted, compared with a rise of 1.1% the previous month.

Most states experienced a drop in sales this February, except for Tasmania, which rose by 1.5%, and the Northern Territory which rose by 0.8%.

In original terms, Australian turnover decreased 11.9% in February 2010. On the positive side however, Australian turnover increased 3.4% in February 2010 compared with February 2009.

restaurant food

The only industry category with increased February sales in seasonally adjusted terms, was Cafes, Restaurants & Takeaway Food Services, which rose by 1.8% on January’s sales.

Taken together, this increased turnover compared to last year, and the sales growth in Cafes, Restaurants & Takeaway Food Services, indicates that consumers may have recovered their optimism since the global financial crisis.  Spending at restaurants is usually one of the first luxuries that people give up in economic downturns, so the fact that this industry has seen increased sales is encouraging.  This is good news for the food industry, particularly restaurants and gourmet food manufacturers and retailers, who were particularly hard hit by the financial crisis.