Retailers can expect a slight improvement in year-on-year sales growth in the coming months, according to the 18th edition of the AFGC CHEP Retail Index.
The index, which is lead indicator for retail sales growth in Australia, was 4.2 per cent higher in June 2015 compared with June 2014.
“Looking ahead to next August, there’s a continuation of the recent trend of improving retail sales growth, with year-on-year growth reaching 4.7 per cent,” CHEP Asia Pacific President Phillip Austin said.
“On a quarterly basis, the index was 4.3 per cent higher in the June quarter 2015 compared with the June quarter 2014 and growth in the index is expected to lift to 4.6 per cent year-on-year by the September quarter 2015.”
The latest Australian Bureau of Statistics trend data indicates that household goods retailing continues to be the strongest performing retail sector, most likely on the back of low interest rates and a strong lift in new home building. The low interest rates also appear to be supporting some other discretionary categories, including clothing sales, which have strengthened since March 2015. However, food retailers have experienced a lower growth rate of around four per cent since late 2014.
Australian Food and Grocery Council CEO Gary Dawson says it is encouraging to see low interest rates and a pick-up in jobs growth rate flowing through to stronger retail sales. “In food retailing, growth is lower than other retail sectors, but at four per cent or better, remains strong despite softening population growth and is likely to continue to benefit from improved confidence and ongoing low interest rates,” he said.
The next AFGC CHEP Retail Index will be released in late October 2015.