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NAB analysts are forecasting that the Australia’s ABS retail trade for February will grow for a second consecutive month, following a weak Christmas period and a subdued January ABS print (the ABS print for January was 0.1% m/m, NAB forecast -0.3% at the time, revised to 0.5%m/m).

Key Quotes

“For February our Cashless Retail Sales Index implies growth of 0.3% in the month. The lower read compared to the January Retail Sales print, combined with weakness in our other indicators (such as the NAB Monthly Business Survey), makes us somewhat cautious about these results – and in particular there may be some downside risk to the Cashless estimate for February.”

“The NAB cashless retail sales index, which generally grows faster than the ABS measure, gained 0.5% m/m in February. Growth continues to slow on a year-on-year basis, standing at 7.9%.”