Bunnings & Masters doing well, but clothing retailers struggling

Yesterday’s retail turnover data from the ABS were unimpressive and have added to the case for a rate cut by the RBA Board today, which is almost a certainty. Our sluggish retail turnover reflects both Australia’s high savings rate in the wake of the financial crisis and an increase in online sales, which have had a large adverse impact on domestic clothing retailers, as shown in the chart below (which presents growth rates over the previous year instead of more volatile monthly data). The strong performance of hardware, building and garden supplies is no surprise given the new Bunnings and Masters stores popping up all over our suburbs. I was surprised about newspaper and book retailing, but this comes off a really poor performance in 2011. In part, it may have something to do with the 50 Shades of Grey phenomenon.

Retailtrade

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2 Responses to Bunnings & Masters doing well, but clothing retailers struggling

  1. KS says:

    The turnaround in books could have something to do with the previous collapse of the Angus & Robertson chain? I note that following their store previous closure A&R have recently reopened in Cairns Central which is now back up to three specialist book stores including ABC and QBD. However the 50 Shades theory is far more interesting!

  2. Gene Tunny says:

    Thanks KS. Now that I think about it, your explanation is much more plausible, although I have been struck by the massive stacks of 50 Shades of Grey at bookstores and Big Ws across Brisbane.

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