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Services Sector in Longest Growth Spurt Since GFC

Posted: October 8th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Business News | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on Services Sector in Longest Growth Spurt Since GFC

Service Sector Rises SeptemberAustralia’s services sector expanded for a fourth straight month in September, marking the longest period of continuous growth since the 2008 global financial crisis.

The Performance Of Services Index by the Australian Industry Group stood at 52.3 last month. This was above the critical 50-point level, separating expansion from contraction.

However, the index eased by 3.4 points for the month, meaning that while the pace of growth slowed in September, the industry remained in expansion overall. The last time the index recorded a four-month stretch of growth was in March 2008.

At the same time, a leading private sector measure of inflation saw consumer prices gain momentum last month, sending the annual rate of inflation to its highest level in 12 months. The TD Securities Melbourne Institute Inflation Gauge rose by 0.3 percent in September, after a 0.1 percent rise in August.

In the 12 months to September, the Inflation Gauge increased by 1.9 percent, the highest annual rate since November 2014. However, that was still below the Reserve Bank’s target range for inflation of 2 to 3 percent.

Within the month, there was a 6.3 percent jump in tobacco prices because of an excise increase, a 4.5 percent rise in the cost of holiday travel and accommodation, and a 1.2 percent increase in fruit and vegetable prices. By contrast, petrol prices fell 5 percent, the cost of newspapers, books and stationery slipped 4.2 percent and clothing prices edged 0.7 percent lower.

Sector by sector, side-by-side the indices remain relatively flat, Services dropped 3.4 points to 52.3, Construction eased 1.9 points to 51.9 while Manufacturing inched forward, gaining 0.4 points to settle on 52.1 points  :: Read the full article »»»»