Australia: Growth to remain below trend this year – Westpac

According to analysts at Westpac, the Australian economy in mid-2019 was weak, with annual output growth slowing to only 1.4% (representing a decline in per capita terms), moderating from 3.1% a year earlier.

Key Quotes

“Policy makers have responded, deploying additional stimulus. To date, the reaction to policy stimulus has been mixed. Asset prices have responded, with Sydney and Melbourne housing markets rebounding strongly, a turnaround from recent sharp declines. However, partial indicators suggest that the real economy remained stuck in the slow-lane in the September quarter - real retail sales are still contracting.”

“We continue to expect growth to remain below trend this year and next, forecasting real GDP growth of 2.3% for December 2019 and 2.4% for December 2020. Powerful headwinds continue to impact the economy, notably: a cyclical downturn in construction activity (led by housing); weak wages growth, constraining consumer spending; and a weaker and more uncertain global backdrop.”

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