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Australia’s  consumption, as represented by retail sales, rose slightly in the month of March, bettering estimates, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reported on Tuesday. The retail sales arrived at +0.3 percent month-on-month, compared to the  forecast  of +0.2 percent and down from previous month’s reading of +0.8 percent.  

March Key Points (via ABS)

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The trend estimate rose 0.3% in March 2019. This follows a rise of 0.3% in February 2019 and a rise of 0.2% in January 2019.

The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 0.3% in March 2019. This follows a rise of 0.9% in February 2019 and a rise of 0.1% in January 2019.

In trend terms, Australian turnover rose 3.0% in March 2019 compared with March 2018.

The following industries rose in trend terms in March 2019: Food retailing (0.4%), Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (0.4%), Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (0.3%), and Other retailing (0.1%). Household goods retailing (-0.1%), and Department stores (-0.1%) both fell in trend terms in March 2019.

The following states and territories rose in trend terms in March 2019: New South Wales (0.4%), Queensland (0.3%), Victoria (0.2%), South Australia (0.1%), the Australian Capital Territory (0.1%), and the Northern Territory (0.1%). Western Australia was relatively unchanged (0.0%), and Tasmania (-0.2%) fell in trend terms in March 2019.