Australian retail sales rise more than expected
RIFAN FINANCINDO BERJANGKA – Australian retail sales rose by more than expected in September, government figures showed.
Sales climbed by 1.2% from August, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Tuesday. Economists had been expecting a 0.3% rise. Retail sales rose by 0.1% in August from July, the data showed.
The increase in retail sales in September was broad based, with department-store, household goods and cafe-and-restaurant sales all recording big increases. Department-store sales added 1.3%, while sales of household good surged by 4.1%. Cafe-and-restaurant sales rose 2.0%.
The data is the strongest indicator yet that consumer spending has begun to respond to more than a year of record-low interest rates. The report will also bolster forecasts for GDP growth in the third quarter.
Retail sales in the third quarter, meanwhile, rose by 1.0%, the ABS said. The central bank will meet later Tuesday, and is expected to hold rates steady at 2.5%.