Australia: Weak start to Q3 for Australian consumers
Nominal retail sales in July contracted 0.1% over the previous month in seasonally-adjusted terms, swinging from June’s healthy 0.4% increase. This came well below market expectations of a 0.2% increase. July’s reading suggests consumer spending continued to be restrained by muted wage growth and elevated levels of debt.
July’s dip came on the back of lower sales in clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing; other retailing; cafes, restaurants and takeaway services; food retailing; and sales in department stores. Meanwhile, food retailing and household goods retailing rose.
In annual terms, retail sales expanded 2.6% in July, up from June’s 1.9% increase. Meanwhile, annual average growth in retail sales was stable at June’s 3.0%.