EMPLOYMENT

INSIGHTS, TRENDS AND CASE STUDIES

We’ve constructed a leading index of unemployment based on the predictive power of a very large number of official and surveyed indicators.

Special survey on the second round impact of recent bushfires.

The final monthly business survey of 2019 provides further evidence that activity stabilised in Q4.

The cost of living remains the single biggest driver of consumer anxiety, despite low levels of economy-wide inflation. To understand why, we asked Australians to tell us which costs are adding most to their living expenses.

Business conditions tracked sideways in the month, and appear to have stabilised at low levels, after declining significantly between mid-2018 and 2019.

Conditions and confidence each saw a small improvement in the month with conditions edging up 1pt and confidence lifting 2pts – though both remain below average.

Consumer anxiety rises as concerns over the economy grow.

Business conditions rose 1pt in September to +2 index points. This continues the below average run of business conditions but suggests that the trend weakening since mid-2018 has slowed.

The Australian economy grew by 1.4% over the year to the June 2019, its weakest growth since 2009.

Both business confidence and conditions declined in the month, with both now at +1 index point – well below long-run averages.

We’re seeing below average confidence and conditions. The picture remains unchanged since last month – business sector has lost significant momentum since early 2018 and forward looking indicators don’t point to an improvement in the near term.

Recent RBA research shows that high mortgage debt is a drag on consumer spending, helping explain the weak growth in consumption since the global financial crisis.

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