March Retail Sales Beat Forecasts
Australian retail sales jumped 0.3% in March [seasonally adjusted], beating market expectations for a 0.2% lift. The results follow a revised gain of 0.9% in February.
March numbers were driven by a leap in food retailing, with price increases (than volume) driving the surge.
During the month, household goods retailing lift 0.2% [seasonally adjusted], whilst department stores slumped 1.5%.
Electrical and electronic goods retailing slipped 0.1%.
Excluding food-related items, local retail sales soared 0.3% in March, notching a 2.9% increase from the previous 12 months – the fastest since October 2018.Retail sales jumped in all Australian states and territories during the month, bar WA and ACT.
Despite sales beating market expectations for the last two months, retail sales volumes contracted – down 0.05% versus a 0.3% lift expected.
“The quarterly fall in volumes was led by household goods retailing at 0.6%, and department stores at 1.2%,” claims the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
The news comes as household debt further soars, coupled with declining household debt.
A drop in retail spending has also hampered local GDP.