Published: Sun, January 13, 2019
Finance | By Loren Pratt

Online Retail Turnover in November "Highest Level Recorded"

Online Retail Turnover in November

The November result was better than the 0.3 per cent rise expected by the market, with the Australian dollar spiking above 72 U.S. cents on the release, before cooling to 71.96 at 1135 AEDT.

There was a monthly rise in food retailing, up 0.2 per cent to $11 billion, as well as a lift for department stores, up 0.4 per cent to $1.57 billion.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), retail turnover increased by 0.4 percent in November 2018, sitting pretty at 0.1 percent higher than the previous month.

Cumulative credit card spending through the CBA's network fell 3.7% between November to early January compared to the levels of a year earlier, underscoring the risk of weakness in the December retail sales report.

"Retail turnover from online sales continues to increase at a high rate and this can be attributed to the rise in popularity of events such as Click Frenzy and Cyber Monday, combined with the fact that buying online is a convenient option for many shoppers", she said in a statement Friday afternoon.

Retail sales rose 0.4 per cent to $27.1 billionduring the month, seasonally adjusted, which coincides with the much-hyped Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

Australian retail sales jumped to the highest in five months in November boosted by pre-Christmas shopping, an indication private consumption bounced in the final quarter of 2018. Even so, Australia's retail sector faces several headwinds amid a downturn in the country's property market, sluggish wage growth and high household debt.

Household goods retailing and clothing led the rises with gains of 1.2 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively.

"Both of these industries were impacted by strong promotional activity in the November month, including Black Friday sales", the ABS said.

Singapore's total retail sales value in November 2018 was estimated at 3.8 billion Singapore dollars (about 2.81 billion USA dollars). The Australian dollar has since spiked over 0.2% to 72 USA cents.

Excluding food sales, turnover increased by an even slower 1.9% from a year earlier, also the smallest gain since May 2018.

The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 0.4% in November 2018.

November turned out to be a solid month for retailers, as shoppers brought forward their Christmas spending.

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