16/09/2009 - 09:09

WA business confidence up: Sensis

16/09/2009 - 09:09

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Business confidence and business performance in WA improved during the last quarter and is now above the national average despite a particularly challenging February to April trading period, a survey has revealed.

Business confidence and business performance in WA improved during the last quarter and is now above the national average despite a particularly challenging February to April trading period, a survey has revealed.

The Sensis Business Index found business confidence among small to medium enterpirses (SMEs) had not been at this level in WA since May 2008.

 

 

Full Announcement below:

 

Conditions turn positive again for WA businesses

 

The landscape is looking positive again for WA businesses, according to the SensisĀ® Business Index released today.

The quarterly survey began in 1993 and provides the latest snapshot of small and medium enterprise (up to 199 employees) business activity in Australia. It is based on a sample size of 1,800 businesses from metropolitan and regional areas, interviewed between 18 August and 4 September 2009.

Report author Ms Christena Singh said business confidence and business performance in WA improved during the quarter, after a particularly challenging February to April trading period.

"Business confidence has jumped strongly in WA during the quarter and is now above the national average.

"We have not seen business confidence at this level in WA since May 2008," Ms Singh said.

Having plenty of work on the horizon is the main reason businesses are confident. A decrease in business is the main reason some businesses remain worried.

In line with improved confidence, WA small businesses experienced healthier trading conditions during the quarter, with improvements in all indicators with the exception of prices and employment which remained unchanged.

The profitability indicator improved dramatically during the quarter, but remains in negative territory and below the national average.

Demand for goods and services also strengthened considerably during the quarter, with the sales indicator now in positive territory and well above the national average.

"WA businesses are expecting profitability and sales to grow strongly during the coming quarter, to levels not seen in more than 12 months," she noted.

Stronger business confidence has also translated to improved capital investment, with WA businesses investing in capital goods at a level above the national average.

WA businesses are still shedding more staff than they are hiring; however, data for the coming quarter suggests strong employment growth.

The report shows support for the WA Government's policies fell during the quarter, but it remains the nation's most popular state and territory government.

SensisĀ® Business Index Key Indicators for WA:

- The WA business confidence indicator jumped 17 percentage points to 52 per cent, two percentage points above the national average

- Over the quarter, 16 per cent of businesses decreased their workforce size and 10 per cent increased staff numbers. The WA employment indicator is negative six per cent, slightly above the national average of negative five per cent

- The profitability indicator moved from negative 28 per cent to negative three per cent, to be three percentage points above the national average

- Demand for goods and services grew strongly, with the sales indicator rallying from negative 25 per cent to positive eight per cent, eight percentage point above the flat national average

Capital expenditure strengthened, with the indicator moving from one per cent to four per cent
Support for the WA Government's policies fell from 12 per cent to seven per cent.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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