The National Australia Bank (NAB) released the results of their monthly business survey for May 2016 earlier this week.
The survey found that the index of business confidence fell 2 points to a reading of 3 over the month while the index of business conditions was steady over the month with a reading of 10 points.
NAB’s commentary highlighted that “The Business Survey remains true to the narrative of an ongoing recovery in non-mining sectors of the economy, building on the already solid growth seen in the recent National Accounts.”
While business conditions remain quite robust the much weaker business confidence index is a little concerning, especially when you consider that the RBA cut official interest rates in May.
NAB suggests that other factors such as the Federal election could be impacting on business confidence and they also note that the deterioration was confined to a subset of industries (mainly manufacturing and transport).
Westpac and the Melbourne Institute released the June 2016 results of their monthly consumer sentiment survey.
The Consumer Sentiment Index was recorded at 102.2 points over the month, down from 103.2 points in May.
Although sentiment fell over the month it has remained above 100 points indicating that consumers were more optimistic than pessimistic.
It was only the 2nd time in 28 months that the Index was above 100 points for consecutive months.
Most components of the Index fell over the month with the only exceptions being family finances over the past 12 months and family finance over the next 12 months.
Westpac and the Melbourne Institute also released the quarterly data in June which includes surveyed views about the wisest place for savings.
The survey showed that 33.2% of respondents felt that a financial institution (bank, building society or credit union) was the wisest place which was its highest reading since the December 2014 quarter.
15.8% of respondents felt real estate was the wisest place for savings which was up from 14.7% over the previous quarter but well below recent levels.
The other major areas of choice were: pay debt (20.0%), shares (8.0%) and spend it (5.9%).
Over the week ending June 12 there were 1,100 capital city auctions with CoreLogic collecting results for 965 auctions, accounting for almost 88% of all auctions held.
The final clearance rate was recorded at 65.7% down from 68.2% over the previous week and the lowest clearance rate in 13 weeks.
The number of auctions fell from 2,008 over the previous week due to long weekends in most states.
Last week, across Melbourne, 341 auctions were held with a clearance rate of 64.5%.
It was Melbourne’s lowest clearance rate of the year with auction volumes well down on the 970 the previous week.
Sydney’s auction clearance rate was recorded at 74.1% across 463 auctions with the clearance rate up from 72.9% across 692 auctions over the previous week.
Across all other regions except for Brisbane and Tasmania auction clearance rates were higher over the past week.
Note that sales listings are based on a rolling 28 day count of unique properties that have been advertised for sale.
Relative to the same period last year, the number of new listings over the past twenty eight days is 7.1% higher on a national basis and the total volume of stock on the market is 4.4% higher.
Across the combined capital cities, new listings are 2.0% higher relative to last year, while total listings are 12.3% higher.
On a city-by-city basis, Brisbane (+11.3%), Adelaide (+14.9%), Perth (+9.1%), Hobart (+2.4%) and Canberra (+2.2%) are seeing a higher number of new listings than a year ago.
In terms of the total stock available for sale, Hobart (-28.5%) and Canberra (-1.0%) are the only capital cities to have fewer total properties for sale than a year ago.
Across the national and combined capital city regions new and total listings have fallen over the past week.
This is a trend we would expect to continue over the coming weeks as we move into winter and the period of less housing market activity.