Bonus Christmas present for Queensland small businesses
Christmas certainly proved the season of giving as Queensland small businesses enjoyed record sales figures.
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry Queensland (CCIQ) had originally forecast cash registers ringing to the tune of $9.13 billion – about 3.9 per cent up on the previous Christmas.
But latest Australia Bureau of Statistics (ABS) data released today reveals an even bigger spend by shoppers over the period (Nov 16-Dec 31).
The actual sales figures were $9.2 billion, which represented 4.2 per cent growth on 2015.
CCIQ State Manager of Advocacy Kate Whittle said the latest figures were consistent with the message from small businesses across Queensland.
“The feedback we are getting every day is that business confidence is on the up, consumer spending is on the up and there is a positive outlook for 2017,” she said.
The Suncorp-CCIQ Pulse Survey of Business Conditions for the December Quarter, released today, showed business confidence had jumped to its highest level in three years.
Data from the CCIQ’s Queensland Economic Update, a monthly report on the state’s economy, had also shown nation-leading retail trade figures, rising job vacancies and lower unemployment driving the local economy.
The ABS means more good news for Queensland’s 410,000 small businesses and further confirms the state economy has turned the corner after two tough years.
“At 4.2 per cent, this is in-line with the 10-year growth average, suggesting that 2016 was a return to “normal” Christmas spending, and a significant improvement on recent years (3.6 per cent - 2015; 1.8 per cent - 2014),” Ms Whittle said.
“Queensland was well above the national average of 3.7 per cent growth.”
By comparison, here are the growth figures for the other states and territories for Christmas sales 2016:
NSW – 4.1 per cent
Vic – 3.7 per cent
Qld – 4.2 per cent
SA – 4.2 per cent
WA – 1.4 per cent
Tas – 4.9 per cent
NT – 2.1 per cent
ACT – 4.9 per cent
AUS – 3.7 per cent
“In addition to Christmas sales, Queensland continues to record nation leading annual growth, compared to the other states of Australia.”
In trend terms, sales increased by 3.9 per cent in December 2016, compared to December 2015, with the national average being 3.2 per cent.
The trend estimates were adjusted down for the latest release, so trend figures have dropped across the board, although but Queensland is still ahead.
In terms of within category performance, Queensland continues to grow at a larger rate than the national average in the categories of food, household goods, clothing & footwear, and other retailing.
Growth comparison table:
Category QLD AUS
Food retailing 4.1 3.2
Household goods retailing 4.0 2.4
Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing 7.2 5.5
Department stores -2.7 -3.2
Other retailing 4.0 3.5
Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services 3.9 5.9