The ABS released monthly (current prices) retail trade data for Dec today which showed national sales up 0.2% (seasonally adjusted and Trend) which was below market expectations of +0.3%. They also released quarterly data on a “chain volume” (essentially inflation-adjusted) measure which showed sales rose 1.5% q/q (seasonally adjusted) and +0.9% (Trend).
Having seen weak retail trade figures in QLD for some months it is encouraging to see a 0.6% m/m increase (seasonally adjusted), although the Trend increase remains at just +0.2% m/m. The quarterly data shows a turn-around for QLD with a positive result for the first time in three quarters. Volume sales increased by 0.8% q/q (seasonally adjusted), although the Trend data still remains slightly negative (-0.1% q/q).
Over the course of the year to Dec 2014 the nation saw volume of sales increase by 3.6% while in QLD the gain was just 0.4%.