Retail industry group the Australian Retailers Association, has commended certain aspects of the Federal Budget, but is disappointed by it not making the hard decisions, spending more than what is earned and its lack of interest in job retention or creation.

ARA executive director Richard Evans, was adamant that the Federal Budget overlooked other industries outside of infrastructure and construction jobs.

“Employment stability is the key to domestic recovery and the Rudd Government’s second budget does little to sure up confidence for the average worker and nothing to provide incentive for small businesses to maintain current workforce levels,” he said.

Evans was also very critical of the Governments spending habits.

“Retail budgeting 101 states that if recurrent revenues decline then recurrent spending should also be reduced. We see little evidence of this in the Federal Budget with the Government failing to make the hard decisions to reign in their spending.”

“What we are seeing is a Government’s spending more than is being earned. If a retailer were to budget with the optimistic forecasting techniques and declining revenues being used by the Government, it would be rejected by their bankers under the current protocols set by them.”

Evans commented that he thought this Federal Budget was more about politics than the need to generate demand and maintain jobs, but that being said he did applaud certain aspects of the announcement.

“We do applaud the boost from 30 to 50 per cent of the small business tax break and the extension to the end of December 2009. This extra incentive for smaller businesses to purchase eligible assets will stimulate business investment spend if demand, and thus cash to actually pay for the investment, returns.”

In terms of the increase to the pension, Evans supports the move but outlined that it was too selective and neglects the youth. And due to the fact that the retail sector is a large employer of young people, Evans was wary of unemployment prospects in the industry.