Retail sales remained strong in November, despite rising interest rates, latest ABS figures show.
Retail sales grew 1.4 percent in November, the strongest monthly rise since March 2009.
ANRA CEO Margy Osmond said strong November retail figures shows spending may be starting to realign with consumer confidence.
“Up until now we’ve seen confidence lift and yet spending has remained patchy. This result indicates the sector entered the Christmas period with the engine revving and potentially gathering momentum,” she said.
However she warns 2010 is going to be a challenging year for retailers.
“Last year interest rates were low and many people received cash handouts which lifted retail spending. This year we are facing strong headwinds driven by the potential for more interest rate hikes and a lingering uncertainty about the global economy and its impact on jobs here at home,” she said.
Access Economics expects retail sales will stay subdued until the end of 2010. Retail sales are expected to grow by just 2.1 percent in 2009-10 (inflation adjusted) before dipping to 1.4 percent in 2010-11.