Consumers remain super-cautious on spending

From

Retail trade, International trade Retail spending grew by just 0.3 per cent in September, below expectations centred on a rise of 0.4 per cent. Non-food retailing rose by 0.4 per cent – the slowest growth in four months. In the September quarter, inflation-adjusted retail trade rose by 0.7 per cent (below forecasts for 1.1 per […]

continue reading

Reserve Bank returns to watchful stance

From

RBA Statement on Monetary Policy; PCI The Reserve Bank has tinkered with economic growth forecasts, but the trajectory is largely unchanged. However the Reserve Bank has modestly downgraded inflation forecasts. The economy is tipped to grow by 3.50-3.75 per cent over 2011 and 3.75-4.00 per cent over 2012. Underlying inflation is tipped to be around […]

continue reading

Biggest slide in home building in a decade

From

Latest economic data The outlook for home builders is gloomy. Council approvals to build news homes slumped by 6.6 per cent in September. Over the past six months approvals have fallen by 31 per cent – the biggest slide in a decade. It was the sixth straight fall in home approvals and eighth decline in […]

continue reading

Reserve Bank takes a punt

From

Reserve Bank Board meeting For the first time in six months the Reserve Bank has elected to increase official interest rates, lifting the cash rate by 25 basis points to 4.75 per cent. While inflation is in the middle of the 2-3 per cent target band and economic indicators are decidedly mixed, the Reserve Bank […]

continue reading

Tame inflation; Manufacturing orders sink

From

Inflation gauge; Weekly Petrol Price, PMI, House Price Index The TD Securities-Melbourne Institute monthly inflation gauge rose by 0.3 per cent in October after lifting 0.1 per cent in September, and 0.2 per cent in August. Importantly other underlying rates of inflation were relatively tame in October. The trimmed mean rose by 0.2 per cent […]

continue reading

Weekly market & economic update: 29 October 2010

From

Headline developments of the past week US GDP grew an annualised 2% in the September quarter, which was right in line with market expectations. Clearly the US economy has not plunged into the double dip that was much feared a few months ago, but by the same token it is not growing fast enough to […]

continue reading

Budget deficit soars to record high

From

Federal budget The underlying budget deficit hit a record high of $63.3 billion in the twelve months to September 2010, indicating that the Government has plenty of work to do to reach its forecast deficit of $40.8 billion in nine months time. CommSec estimates that the budget deficit equates to 4.9 per cent of GDP, […]

continue reading

Investor Signposts: Week Beginning October 31 2010

From

The big picture Here’s a scary thought – 2010 is almost over, with just over two months to go to the end of the year. So it is opportune to see where Australia stands in the global rankings of shares, currencies and interest rates. One of the interesting findings is that the Australian sharemarket is […]

continue reading

Global Property Securities Update

From

Overview Strong returns by listed property companies during the month were mainly driven by positive momentum in most global equity markets. The prospect of further quantitative easing in the US would be beneficial to property companies. Asset valuations would improve because the lower risk-free rate tends to cause capitalisation rates to have adownward bias. We […]

continue reading

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 […]

continue reading