Pete Wargent blogspot

Co-founder & CEO of AllenWargent property buyer's agents, offices in Brisbane (Riverside) & Sydney (Martin Place), & CEO of WargentAdvisory (providing subscription analysis, reports & services to institutional clients).

5 x finance/investment author - 'Get a Financial Grip: a simple plan for financial freedom’ (2012) rated Top 10 finance books by Money Magazine & Dymocks.

"Unfortunately so much commentary is self-serving or sensationalist. Pete Wargent shines through with his clear, sober & dispassionate analysis of the housing market, which is so valuable. Pete drills into the facts & unlocks the details that others gloss over in their rush to get a headline. On housing Pete is a must read, must follow - he's one of the finest property analysts in Australia" - Stephen Koukoulas, MD of Market Economics, former Senior Economics Adviser to Prime Minister Gillard.

"Pete is one of Australia's brightest financial minds - a must-follow for articulate, accurate & in-depth analysis." - David Scutt, Business Insider, leading Australian market analyst.

"I've been investing for over 40 years & read nearly every investment book ever written, yet I still learned new concepts in his books. Pete Wargent is one of Australia's finest young financial commentators." - Michael Yardney, Australia's leading property expert, Amazon #1 best-selling author.

"The most knowledgeable person on Aussie real estate markets - Pete's work is great, loads of good data & charts, the most comprehensive analyst I follow in Australia. If you follow Australia, follow Pete Wargent" - Jonathan Tepper, Variant Perception, Global Macroeconomic Research, author of the New York Times bestsellers 'End Game' & 'Code Red'.

"The level of detail in Pete's work is superlative across all of Australia's housing markets" - Grant Williams, co-founder RealVision - where world class experts share their thoughts on economics & finance - author of Things That Make You Go Hmmm, one of the world's most popular & widely-read financial publications.

"Wargent is a bald-faced realty foghorn" - David Llewellyn-Smith, 'MacroBusiness'.

Tuesday, 5 April 2016

Moths to a flame!

Retail flat

Another massive month of Retail Trade for the Australian Capital Terrirtory (ACT) as the good people of Canberra have continued to be drawn like moths to the IKEA flame since the "ready-to-assemble" household accessories retailer opened in the capital.

More than 12,000 locals turned out for the store opening day in November, and local retail turnover has been fairly blazing along ever since. 

At the national level retail turnoved increased by only +0.2 per cent in trend terms in February and was flat in seasonally adjusted terms at $24.84 billion. 

In trend terms retail turnover growth has slowed and now sits at around the half decade average at a little over +3.7 per cent. 

Retail turnover growth seems to be losing some of its momentum.

Industry groups

February was obviously a somewhat underwhelming month, with food retailing recording an unusual decline, and restaurant & takeaway expenditure also falling in the month.  

Over the past year the strongest contributions have come from department stores, clothing & footwear, and household goods, perhaps driven by established households enjoying a combination of low mortgage repayments and rising dwelling prices, at least in the larger capital cities. 

Historically household spend has not increased when house price growth moderates, so this slowing in momentum represents further ammunition for those expecting further interest rate cuts, particularly with wages growth presently soft. 

State versus state

In trend terms New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland all notched +0.2 per cent gains in February, while in seasonally adjusted terms it was the two most populous states which recorded the largest absolute gains. 

And Canberra! Another ripper month for the ACT sees the capital territory blazing to the top of the retail turnover growth charts, both for the past quarter and on an annualised basis. 

The wrap

Overall, a fairly uninspiring set of numbers, and another tick in the easing bias column. 

Futures markets are pricing an interest rate cut by the end of the calendar year, and analysts will be watching the wording closely when the Reserve Bank releases its Monetary Policy Decision later today.

Of particular interest will be comments related to the recent rebound of the Aussie dollar.

As we'll see later this morning in the International Trade figures, this won't have helped the dollar value of commodity exports, and a monthly trade deficit in the range of $2-3 billion is expected by consensus forecasts.