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ANZ analysts note that the Australian retail sales fell by 0.1% in July and the negative result suggests that it is too early to see the effects of tax cuts, the earliest of which would have been received in mid-July.

Key Quotes

“Sales went backwards in a number of non-food categories, including recreation goods, clothing, dining out and furniture/homewares. This suggests that households are delaying non-essential purchases – partially due to squeezed budgets and partially in anticipation of receiving the tax cuts in late July/August.”

“We expect to see stronger retail growth in August, as substantial tax cut refunds are received and spent. Our recent insight has more detail on how tax cuts spur on household spending.”

“Annual growth fell to 2.4%. This is the lowest annual growth result since January 2018, and we have only seen lower growth five times in the last five years.”