Tasmania tops the states for economic performance, and WA jumps to its highest rank in six years: CommSec

Tasmania

Hobart City and the Tasman Bridge, Tasmania.

Tasmania and the ACT are the best performing economies in the country and Western Australia has secured its highest ranking in six years, new CBA data shows.

For the fifth quarter in a row Tasmania has topped the list in CommSec’s State of the States report, ahead of the ACT in second place and Western Australia in third.

Victoria is sitting at fourth place, followed by South Australia, Queensland, New South Wales and the Northern Territory.

CommSec chief economist Craig James said Tasmania and the ACT secured their top positions due to above-average population growth in Tasmania, and a strong job market in the ACT.

“As a result, it’s unlikely we’ll see any considerable change at the top of the rankings in the near future.”

Retail spending in the ACT was strongest, at 19.4% above its decade average in the December quarter.

Tasmania, Queensland and New South Wales ranked second, third and fourth respectively for retail spending, with Victoria jumping from eighth place to fifth in the quarter.

1. Tasmania

Tasmania leads on three of the eight economic indicators, including equipment investment, dwelling starts — a measurement of new housing construction — and relative population growth. It ranks most poorly on housing finance, which assesses the value of owner-occupier home loans.

2. ACT

The ACT topped the relative unemployment indicator, but lagged behind on population growth at fourth place.

3. Western Australia

Western Australia ranked second on three indicators including relative unemployment, economic growth and population growth.

However, it did not perform well in construction work, sitting at sixth place.

“The West Australian economy has significant momentum provided by mining and housing construction,” James said.

4. Victoria

Victoria managed to hold its top rank for construction work, as well as housing finance. However, the state came last for relative unemployment and relative population growth.

5. South Australia

South Australia slid from third to fifth on the performance rankings since the last quarter. At second place, the state’s strongest indicator is relative population growth.

6. Queensland

Queensland performed well on housing finance, sitting at second position, which helped it to secure sixth place overall. However, it ranked eighth on both relative economic growth and equipment investment.

7. New South Wales

Despite sitting at seventh place overall, New South Wales managed to rank third on construction work done. The state’s worst performing indicator was dwelling starts.

8. Northern Territory

The Northern Territory continues to lag behind all states and territories on six indicators, scoring sixth on economic growth. However, it ranked second on equipment investment.

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