How & where we spent in 2013

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Consumer spending perspective Retail trade in 2013: Over 2013 as a whole, Australians spent $264.2 billion at retail outlets. Spending was up 3.2 per cent over 2012 – the strongest calendar-year growth in four years. “New normal?” The 3.2 per cent growth in spending was just below the 5-year-average growth rate of 3.4 per cent. In real […]

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CBA Economics: Retail trade subdued in May

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Retail trade grew by 0.1% in May to stand at a lacklustre 2.3% higher through the year. Spending was strongest at department stores and on clothing and footwear. Subdued retail trade growth reflects weakness in the nominal economy. Retail trade rose by 0.1% in May, which was slightly less than market expectations which centred on […]

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Disappointing Christmas spending

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Economy-wide spending softened in December, extending the zig-zag run witnessed over the past seven months. According to the Commonwealth Bank Business Sales Indicator (BSI), spending fell by 1.9 per cent in seasonally adjusted terms in December after rising by 2.4 per cent in November. But the less volatile trend estimate of spending shows that underlying […]

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New Carbon Tax: More or less certainty?

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Details on proposed Carbon Tax The Federal Government has proposed a new tax on carbon emissions of $23 a tonne to apply to 500 of the biggest corporate emitters from July 2012. The aim of the tax is to increase the price of goods produced by carbon-intensive industries and thus change behaviour of consumers and […]

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CommSec: Population growth hits 5-year low and cash is now king

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Demographic data; Financial Accounts Australia’s population grew by 69,703 people over the December quarter to 22,477,378. Annual population growth slowed from 1.57 per cent to 1.47 per cent – the weakest growth rate in almost five years. Despite businesses crying out for skilled migration, the Government’s reduction in the skilled migrant intake meant that in-bound […]

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RBA confirms that it is ‘wait and see’ mode

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In a speech by RBA Assistant Governor (Economic) Philip Lowe entitled “Inflation: The Recent Past and the Future”, Mr Lowe has reiterated that the RBA believes underlying inflation will lift only slowly, and over a matter of years rather than months. Philip Lowe didn’t flag any near-term implications for rates, noting: “While conditions are very […]

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CommSec: Improved conditions for retailers

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CBA Business Spending Index There appears light in the tunnel for retailers. A key measure of economy-wide spending is now edging slightly higher after contracting for most of the past year. The Commonwealth Bank Business Sales Indicator (BSI) was broadly flat in trend terms in May (actually up 0.02 per cent). Revised figures now indicate […]

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CommSec: Petrol set to fall as global oil price slides

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Weekly petrol prices According to the Australian Institute of Petroleum, the national average Australian price of unleaded petrol rose by 1.1 cents per litre to 140.2 cents a litre in the week to June 19. Global oil prices recorded a sharp fall in the past week which should translate into lower pump prices in a […]

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CommSec: Lending near 5-year low; Credit cards shunned

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Lending finance; Credit & debit card statistics Lending slides again. Total lending finance fell for the third time in four months, dropping by 3.8 per cent in April to near 5-year lows. Lending is down 3.4 per cent over the year. In trend terms lending is at 8-month lows. The average credit card balance barely […]

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CommSec: Home loans rise but investors stay clear

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Housing finance The number of new owner-occupier housing loans rose by 4.8 per cent in April after falling by 1.1 per cent in March. The number of loans is 3.1 per cent higher than a year ago Loans for the purchase of newly erected dwelling rose by 9.0 per cent in April after sliding by […]

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