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Australian retail sales surge over recovery

 

Bloomberg

Australian retailers recorded their best month of sales in nearly a year as consumers splashed out on everything from dining out to clothing, taking advantage of the easing of protracted lockdowns and building momentum in the economy for the final quarter.
Sales surged 4.9% in October from a month earlier, when they rose 1.3%, and more than doubled economists’ forecast of a 2.2% gain, Australian Bureau of Statistics data showed. That was the biggest rise since November 2020.
“Australians coming out of lockdown have well and truly hit the pavement, ditching the loungewear, refreshing their wardrobe and heading out to enjoy cafes and restaurants,” said Jo Masters, chief economist at Ernst & Young LLP. The result “is yet another sign that the economy is roaring back,” she said.
Strong consumer spending, together with high job vacancies and firms boosting investment intentions help explain why markets believe the Reserve Bank’s first interest-rate increase is only a matter of months away. Traders are pricing in an initial 15 basis-point hike to take the cash rate to 0.25% in May.

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