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Australia's consumers see ray of hope - survey   

2008-11-14 17:50:08|  分类: 默认分类 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Australia's consumers see ray of hope - survey

Wed, Nov 12 2008, 02:20 GMT


By Wayne Cole

SYDNEY, Nov 12 (Reuters) - Australia's conflicted consumers turned a little less gloomy in November, a survey showed on Wednesday, as sharp falls in interest rates and petrol prices helped lighten a pervasive pessimism about the economy.

Wayne Cole

路透社悉尼报道(11月12日),11月澳大利亚矛盾重重的消费者又少了一些忧虑。周三公布的 一项调查显示,利率的大幅下滑以及汽油价格的下跌缓解了市场对经济前景的担忧情绪。

There also looked to be scope for yet more rate cuts as figures showed wages grew by less than expected last quarter, likely reinforcing the Reserve Bank of Australia's (RBA) belief that inflation had peaked.


"This should give the RBA confidence that the risk of a wages break-out is all but passed and inflation will moderate," said Brian Redican, a senior economist at Macquarie. "That means they can keep cutting aggressively."

“应该相信澳洲联储解除了薪资突破式增长的风险,而通货膨胀由恶性也将变的温和”麦格理高级经济师Brian Redican 指出,“这样意味着澳洲联储可以保持大幅降息的手段”

He, like many investors, expects another cut of 75 basis points in December which would take the cash rate to a six-year low of 4.5 percent.


"And it's just as well, given how negative sentiment has become on the global outlook," added Redican. "Consumers need all the help they can get."

“消极的情绪已经蔓延全球,” Redican 补充说道,“消费者需要得到所有他们能得到的帮助。”

The central bank last week slashed its key cash rate by 75 basis points to 5.25 percent, bringing the easing since September to 2 full percentage points. That was the most aggressive move since the recession of 1990/91 and worth more than A$400 a month to a household with an average mortgage. At the same time, petrol prices had fallen steadily and the government launched a A$10.4 billion ($6.8 billion) stimulus package, most of which would hit wallets in time for Christmas.


All of which was enough to nudge up the Westpac-Melbourne Institute index of consumer sentiment by 4.3 percent to 85.5 in November.

"This is a welcome result," said Westpac chief economist Bill Evans, noting respondents felt more confident about buying a major household item in a boost for hard-pressed retailers.


“这是一个可喜的结果,”西太平洋银行首席经济学家Bill Evans指出,他注意到受访者,对购买家庭必需品将会缓解困难重重的零售商的压力,他们对此抱有信心。


Yet, Evans also noted that November's bounce only recouped part of October's steep 11 percent dive and left the index down 22.6 percent on last year. Pessimists still outnumbered optimists, and had done for the longest period since the recession of 1990/91.



Consumers also remained worried about their personal finances, likely reflecting the painful blow to household wealth from this year's dive in share prices.


"Today's data shows how just how hard policy is having work to support a still-fragile consumer in the face of very negative news flow of global financial market problems and job security," said Scott Haslem, chief economist at UBS.

“今天的数据显示,如何如何困难的政策已经在恢复脆弱的消费者信心上起到作用,坦然面对全球金融市场问题和工作保障的负面新闻。”瑞银首席经济学家 Scott Haslem,指出。

That was one reason he expected the RBA to slash rates to just 4.0 percent over coming months, which would be the lowest in at least two decades.

Adding to the case for cuts was the clear moderation in wages growth, added Haslem.



The government's main measure of wages rose 0.9 percent in the third quarter, below forecasts of a 1.0 percent increase and down from 1.1 percent the previous quarter.


The annual pace of growth held at 4.1 percent, still well short of the 4.5 percent pace that economists consider a potential threat to inflation.


The RBA had long been concerned that a very tight labour market would eventually stoke wage costs, though annual growth remained around 4 percent even as unemployment hit 30-year lows of 3.9 percent earlier this year.


Since then, the jobless rate has edged up to 4.3 percent and, with the economy clearly slowing, analysts expect a further steady climb toward 6 percent by the end of 2009.


(Editing by Mark Bendeich) Keywords: AUSTRALIA ECONOMY/

(wayne.cole@reuters.com ; +61 2 9373 1813; Reuters Messaging: wayne.cole.reuters.com@reuters.net )



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