The new age of consumer thrift

Key points The GFC has ushered in a period of more cautious consumers in the US and to a lesser extent in Australia. Household savings rates are likely to be higher than over the last decade as households seek to cut debt ratios in the face of reduced credit availability, greater economic uncertainty and constrained […]

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Deflation reigns: Bonanza for consumers

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Consumer Prices There are more goods falling in price currently than at any time over the past decade. In the June quarter 33 items were cheaper than a year ago while 29 items were cheaper in the September quarter. In the September quarter alone, 25 goods were cheaper than in the three previous months. Deflation […]

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Inflation: Another beautiful set of numbers

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Consumer Price Index Australia’s main inflation measure – the consumer price index (CPI) – rose by 0.7 per cent in the September quarter, well below economist forecasts. The annual rate of consumer inflation eased from 3.1 per cent to 2.8 per cent – in other words back inflation is back in the Reserve Bank’s 2-3 […]

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Equity market sentiment rebounds but investors cling to safe haven assets

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Majority of Australian investors bullish on local equity market Investors could miss out on opportunities in volatile markets by being too risk adverse Investor sentiment in Australia is on the rise and there is a markedly more bullish attitude to Australian equities, according to the quarterly ING Investor Dashboard Sentiment Index released today. However, it […]

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State of the States

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State & territory economic performance report How are Australia’s states and territories performing? CommSec has attempted to find out by analysing eight key indicators: economic growth; retail spending; equipment investment; unemployment, construction work done; population growth; housing finance and dwelling commencements. Just as the Reserve Bank uses decade averages to determine the level of “normal” […]

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Business inflation narrowly based

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Producer price index; Weekly petrol price The broad measure of business inflation – the producer price index (PPI) – rose by 1.3 per cent in the September quarter, well ahead of expectations for an increase of 0.5 per cent. Compared with a year ago, producer prices were up by 2.2 per cent. Inflation was narrowly […]

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Consumer bonanza

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Import & export prices Prices of export goods rose by a record 7.8 per cent in the September quarter, courtesy of higher coal and iron ore prices. Export prices are 27.7 per cent higher than a year ago Prices of imported goods rose by 0.7 per cent in the September quarter, but driven largely by […]

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Weekly market & economic update – 22 October 2010

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Headline developments of the past week The focus over the past week was on China which undertook a surprise 0.25% increase in benchmark lending and deposit rates. This caused a blip in global financial markets as investors pondered whether this is the start of another round of policy tightening in China which might threaten Chinese […]

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$A parity – is it sustainable & what is the impact?

Key points For the first time in 28 years the $A has spiked above parity against the $US, highlighting the culmination of a long hard slog back to form for the Australian economy. In a longer term context it is the last 28 years below parity which is the aberration. While the $A is vulnerable […]

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Parity! Aussie dollar hits 28-year high

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Economic trends The Aussie dollar hit parity with the US dollar – one Australian dollar equalling one US dollar – overnight. The Aussie hit US$1.0002 very briefly at 11.17pm Sydney time before quickly retreating. The Aussie dollar is ending the US session near US98.80c. The last time that the Aussie was at parity with the […]

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