Retail above 5 year average
Retail Trade grew at a solid +0.5 per cent clip in October, a promising start to the fourth quarter for household consumption. Given the weakness in commodities and trade, it will be needed.
The annual growth in retail turnover is now tracking above its five decade average at +3.8 per cent.
Department stores haven't had such a great time of it in recent years, but have at least benefited from a strong +3.5 per cent seasonally adjusted increase in October. Household goods (+1.1 per cent) and food retail (+0.6 per cent) mostly accounted for the remainder of the gains.
Over the year it has been household goods retail that has led the way, largely thanks to the housing boom in Sydney and Melbourne. The Reserve Bank may need house price growth to continue in 2016 to in order to facilitate the "handover".
Online retail contributed 3 per cent to total retail turnover in original terms.
State versus state
At the state level New South Wales (+0.8 per cent), Victoria (+0.5 per cent) and Queensland (+0.5 per cent) all had a strong month in October in seasonally adjusted terms.
Victoria appears to be picking up the mantle from New South Wales, while many indicators have shown that the economy of Tasmania has at last shown signs of life.
Overall, a robust result for retail trade, reflecting above average consumer confidence and easy monetary policy.