09/11/1999 - 21:00

Retail suffers bleak times

09/11/1999 - 21:00

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WA retail traders have experienced the seventh consecutive month of decline according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Retail suffers bleak times
WA retail traders have experienced the seventh consecutive month of decline according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

In September, WA was the only State showing a decline. Australia-wide results indicated a 0.6 per cent increase for the month.

WA Retail Traders Association manager Brian Reynolds said WA performance had been poor.

“Since about March this year we have consistently underperformed compared to the national figures,” he said.

Mr Reynolds said the decline was due largely to poor figures in regional areas because of the resource sector decline. He said the situation was particularly severe in the North West and in Kalgoorlie.

He said there was also evidence that the decline was having an effect on the metropolitan area as mining service companies also are feeling the pinch.

However, Mr Reynolds said it appeared the resource sector had started to turn the corner.

He said the recent small rise in interest rates would have little effect on the industry unless it was followed by more increases.

With Christmas approaching retail traders should do well over the next two months, Mr Reynolds said.

WA spent more than $1.1 billion on shopping in September. By far the greatest beneficiary was the food retailing sector with about half of every dollar spent going towards food.

Overall, Australians spent $12 billion at the shops in September.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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