While retail sales continued to grow in July there is evidence Australians are restraining themselves when it comes to larger spending items. Analysis of the retail trade figures released by the Bureau of Statistics yesterday show some stark trends in spending behaviour.
CommSec senior analyst Grant Saligari says spending in furniture retailing remained flat for a fourth consecutive month and appliance retailing remained below its long-term average growth rate.
He said August’s interest rate rise and the looming federal election could keep spending on big ticket items subdued in the months ahead.
Another noticeable trend is the growth in department store sales. That sector has grown strongly for the last four months and in trend terms, spending grew 0.8% in August.
Saligari says the recent rise in the value of the Australian dollar is likely to lower the price of imported goods. This will subsequently benefit retailers like JB Hi-Fi and Harvey Norman.