The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) retail-trade figures for June 2017 show signs of a strengthening retail industry, after 12 months of softened growth.
According to the ABS, the seasonally adjusted trend rose 0.3 per cent in seasonally adjusted terms from the previous month, following a rise of 0.6 per cent in May. In trend terms, the increase was slightly higher at 0.4 per cent.
The ABS reported a slight rise across all industries from household goods (0.9 per cent) to food retailing (0.2 per cent) and department stores (0.3 per cent).
The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) Executive Director Russell Zimmerman attributes the positive trade figures to the continuing growth in food retailing.
“Although we see a robust 3.8 per cent year-on-year growth, the main driving force of this increase stems from supermarkets and grocery stores with a sturdy four per cent growth year-on-year,” he said.
“As food retailing represents 40 per cent of overall retail trade, this continual surge in food retailing reflects positively on the overall industry.”
National Retail Association CEO Dominique Lamb says the slight increase in overall retail trade demonstrates the industry is once again gaining momentum across all states, nationwide.
“These figures indicate the retail sector is showing signs of recovery after 12 months of operating amidst a challenging environment,” she said.
“The rise across all industries within the sector is telling us that we’re coming out of what has been a long period of sluggish growth.”
Ms Lamb says the outlook for retailers is improving in the lead up to Father’s Day in September.
“We anticipate a further increase in retail spend in the month of July, as consumers hit the shops in preparation for Father’s Day,” she said.