Retail sales experienced strong growth in August, climbing higher than expected, according to the latest ABS figures.
Retail sales climbed 0.9 percent in August, after a one percent slump in July. Economists had originally predicted a 0.5 percent increase.
The strong growth in sales has partly been attributed to growing consumer confidence as the economy continues to show signs of improvement.
The growth has fuelled talk that the Reserve Bank will soon raise interest rates. Most market economists are saying today’s data increases the chance of the Reserve Bank raising official interest rates later this year, with some expecting a rise as early as next week.
“We are still looking for rates to rise by 25 basis points each in October and December,” JP Morgan economist Helen Kevans told Reuters.
Commenting on the figures, Adam Carr, the chief economist at ICAP told Reuters that “it does increase the odds of a November RBA hike.”