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Australia’s consumer spending, as represented by Retail Sales, fell by 4% month-on-month in August, the data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on Friday showed. The preliminary estimate had called for a contraction of 4.2%. 

Key points

  • The seasonally adjusted estimate fell 4.0% in August 2020.
  • The result follows a rise of 3.2% in July, and a rise of 2.7% in June 2020. 
  • Food retailing fell 0.2% in August, in seasonally adjusted terms.
  • Household goods retailing fell 6.0% in August, in seasonally adjusted terms.

The decline in consumer spending validates the Reserve Bank of Australia’s ultra-easy monetary policy. The central bank is now expected to cut rates to a fresh record low of 0.10% in November.