Retail Sales Jump But Still Patchy, Warns CBA

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Good news for the retail trade with new stats showing sales are on the up. Recorded sales activity for February grew 0.9 per cent.This is the third increase in a four month period, rising by 0.4 per cent in seasonally adjusted terms, according to the Commonwealth business sales indicator (BSI).

And it looks good for future business projections, with the estimated growth rate in the index now jumping to 0.5 per cent per month. 

“There’s no doubt that this is the first clear sign that spending is coming back online and that businesses are starting to see the benefit of consumers opening up their wallets,” said Mr Matt Comyn from Commonwealth’s business banking division.

However, despite the spending hike retail is still in a fragile state, with Mr Comyn adding that performance remained “patchy” and whilst a number of retailers were doing well, many that were still hurting.

“Whilst sales figures are firming, however, they are still very much in a fragile state and we are continuing to see consumer sentiment suffering, particularly as a result of ongoing economic uncertainty both at home and abroad.”

The February figures were the fastest trend growth rate since August 2009 and is measured by its credit and debit card transactions in retail establishments, which accounts for 30 percent of all Australian transactions.

 

And it looks like Australian business is in good health overall, with just two out of 20 sectors indicating drops in activity.

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