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Consumer Confidence Takes Sharpest Dive Since Start Of Pandemic

Bucking the usual EOFY sales blitz, retail trade fell 1.8 per cent in June, as consumer confidence took its biggest dive since the start of the pandemic.

Retail is likely to fare even worse in July, as Sydney spends the entire month in lockdown, and non-essential retail shut down for half the month.

The decline in Victorian retail sales was sharper than its earlier lockdown, as consumers brace yet again for a long period of uncertainty.

“As the risks of a long Sydney lockdown increase, so do the risks of a muted recovery, particularly since fiscal support is not as strong as it was during the long Melbourne lockdown in 2020,” ANZ’s Adelaide Timbrell said.

“Two weeks ago, national cabinet agreed that lockdowns would be used as a last resort to managing new COVID outbreaks, but they appear to be with us for the rest of the year given concerns with the delta variant,” Australian Retailers Association chief executive Paul Zahra wrote in a statement calling for a nationalise approach to defining essential work.

“We’ve seen 68 days of state-imposed lockdowns already in 2021 and there’s no doubt that number will continue to climb.”



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