Retail remained unchanged seasonally adjusted, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) retail trade figures for October.
There were small rises across household goods retailing (0.2%), food retailing (0.2%), other retailing (0.2%), clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (0.2%), and cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (0.1%), while department stores fell (-0.1%).
The National Retail Association (NRA) CEO Dominique Lamb said despite tax cuts and interest rate drops, the figures show that consumer confidence has remained low.
“The good news though is that feedback we have received so far is that the Christmas trade period is acting as the circuit breaker needed to turn things around with Black Friday to Cyber Monday the busiest weekend of the year.
“Australian shoppers splurged a record $5 billion as retailers offered bargain prices. For the first time ever, Black Friday was the busiest day of the year for online spend, demonstrating that the event is picking up more momentum each year.
“Discretionary spending has been the big issue in 2019, but with shoppers descending on shopping centres for Black Friday, feedback has been that people have finally unlocked the padlock on their wallets or purses.”