Australia: Retail sales growth rebounds in April
June 4, 2018
Nominal retail sales growth in April came in at 0.4% over the previous month in seasonally-adjusted terms, up from March’s flat reading and coming above market expectations of a more moderate 0.2% rise. Higher sales in food and household goods retailing more than offset contractions in department store sales, as well as in and clothing, footwear and personal accessories retailing.
That said, private consumption continues to expand at a subdued pace, likely restrained by moderate wage growth, high levels of household debt, higher oil prices and a slackening housing market. In annual terms, retail sales grew 1.2% in April, down from 4.4% in March. As a result, growth in annual average retail sales inched down to 2.7% in April from 2.8% in March.
Australia Private Consumption Forecast
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists see private consumption growing 2.5% in 2018, which is up 0.2 percentage points from last month’s forecast. For 2019, the panel also expects private consumption to grow 2.5%.