Economy lifts but spending at GFC levels

Original article by Patrick Commins
The Australian – Page: 4 : 5-Dec-19

Australia’s GDP growth for the September quarter was slightly below economists’ forecasts at 0.4 per cent, while the economy grew by 1.7 per cent year-on-year. The national accounts data also shows that consumer spending increased by just 0.1 per cent during the quarter, which is its lowest rate of growth since the global financial crisis. Meanwhile, the household savings rate rose from 2.7 per cent to 4.8 per cent. Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has welcomed the GDP data, but shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers has renewed Labor’s call for economic stimulus.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS

Investment strike keeps growth low

Original article by Glenda Korporaal
The Australian – Page: 17 & 27 : 5-Dec-19

Commonwealth Bank economist Michael Blythe says the latest GDP data shows that Australia has a two-speed economy, with private sector spending down 0.1 per cent in the September quarter and 0.3 per cent year-on-year, while public sector spending increased by 1.1 per cent and 4.8 per cent respectively. Master Builders Australia has urged the federal government to fast-track smaller infrastructure projects, with chief economist Shane Garrett noting that businesses and consumers lack the confidence to spend at present.

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Stimulus calls to ease as mine exports surge

Original article by Patrick Commins
The Australian – Page: 2 : 4-Dec-19

Kristina Clifton of the Commonwealth Bank says high commodity prices were a big contributor to Australia’s $7.9bn current account surplus for the September quarter. Official data shows that government spending was also higher than forecast during the quarter. The figures have strengthened expectations that the latest national accounts data will show that the economy grew by at least 0.5 per cent in the quarter, and 1.7 per cent year-on-year. This would in turn reduce pressure on the federal government to pursue stimulus measures.

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COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS

Spending forecasts raise GDP fears

Original article by Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 7 : 29-Nov-19

Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that business investment fell by 0.2 per cent in the September quarter and by 1.3 per cent year-on-year. Mining investment increased by 1.2 per cent in the year to September, while investment in equipment, plant and machinery was down 3.5 per cent. Josh Williamson of Citigroup says the latter figure is likely to reduce GDP growth in the September quarter by 0.15 percentage points.

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AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS, CITIGROUP PTY LTD

RBA eyes housing rebound as economic growth slows

Original article by Adam Creighton
The Australian – Page: 1 & 2 : 4-Sep-19

The latest national accounts data is expected to show that Australia’s GDP growth slowed to about 1.5 per cent in the year to June, well below the federal government’s May 2019 Budget forecast of 2.25 per cent growth. Reserve Bank governor Philip Lowe has reiterated that economic growth will improve "gradually"; he notes that although new housing construction activity remains weak, there are signs of an upturn in the established housing market. The central bank’s decision to leave official interest rates on hold in September coincided with the release of data confirming a current account surplus of $5.9bn for the June quarter, the first since the 1970s.

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RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, CAPITAL ECONOMICS LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN GREENS

Look through soft growth

Original article by Phillip Coorey, Matthew Cranston
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 3-Sep-19

There is speculation that the latest national accounts data will show that Australia’s growth slowed to about 1.4 per cent in the year to June. Treasurer Josh Frydenberg says GDP data for the June quarter is likely to be particularly weak, given that it was dominated by the federal election and the US-China trade war. He expects economic conditions to improve in the September quarter, citing stimulatory factors such as the Coalition’s income tax cuts and back-to-back interest rate cuts in June and July. Frydenberg stresses that the Australian economy’s fundamentals remain strong.

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Dark clouds over construction

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 2 : 29-Aug-19

Westpac economist Andrew Hanlan has warned that the downturn in Australia’s construction sector will have weighed on GDP growth in the June quarter. The latest GDP data will be released in early September, and analysts have forecast that the economy grew by just 1.2 per cent in the year to June, which would be its lowest rate of growth since the global financial crisis. Official data shows that construction activity fell by 3.8 per cent in the June quarter, including a 5.1 per cent decline in residential construction.

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WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, AUSTRALIAN BUREAU OF STATISTICS, IFM INVESTORS PTY LTD, JP MORGAN AUSTRALIA LIMITED, MASTER BUILDERS AUSTRALIA INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA

Chinese trade pullback could cost $25bn

Original article by David Rogers
The Australian – Page: 17 & 27 : 22-Aug-19

Andrew Boak of Goldman Sachs warns that the fallout from the US-China trade war could eventually hit Australia. He says growing tensions between Australia and China could potentially result in a sharp fall in Chinese demand for key Australian exports, including education and commodities such as iron ore and coal. Goldman Sachs suggests that in a worst-case scenario, lower Chinese demand could reduce Australia’s GDP growth rate by 130 basis points in 2020.

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Lower taxes can lift growth and wages

Original article by Michael Roddan
The Australian – Page: 2 : 17-Jul-19

The University of Melbourne’s John Freebairn argues that reducing the tax rate for larger companies would stimulate economic growth and help to increase wages. He adds that a tax cut for large companies with non-resident shareholders in particular would boost GDP growth. The federal government has ruled out further attempts to introduce tax cuts for businesses with annual turnover of more than $50m following the bill’s rejection by the Senate.

CORPORATES
UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, ECONOMICS SOCIETY OF AUSTRALIA

Australia’s economy slows to levels last seen during the GFC

Original article by Stephen Letts, Michael Janda
abc.net au – Page: Online : 6-Jun-19

Official data shows that Australia’s GDP growth was just 0.4 per cent in the March 2019 quarter, and 1.8 per cent in the year to March. Annual growth was the lowest in almost a decade, heightening concerns about a GDP per capita recession. The national accounts data also shows that household spending grew by just 1.8 per cent in the year to March, although government spending increased by 5.1 per cent. Shane Oliver of AMP Capital says the near-term outlook for the economy remains positive, but he cautions that the outlook for 2020 is "challenging".

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AMP CAPITAL INVESTORS LIMITED, CITIGROUP PTY LTD, IFM INVESTORS PTY LTD, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, RESERVE BANK OF AUSTRALIA