Business expectations for the final quarter of the year have fallen flat in a sign that the economy’s long-awaited revival will not occur in 2013.
The outlook for the remainder of the year suggests that businesses do not view the conclusion of this month’s federal election as a potential springboard for the economy. Businesses also appear to consider the Reserve Bank’s latest rate cut as reason for continued caution, rather than investment.
With just five per cent of businesses optimistic about increased growth in the final quarter of the year compared to 2012, Dun & Bradstreet has found that expectations for sales, investment and employment in particular are flat and at a low level.
The services and wholesale sectors are the least positive, with just two per cent optimistic about growth in the final quarter of 2013. Manufacturing businesses, supported by a currency moving below US90 cents, are the most upbeat, with 10 per cent more optimistic compared to a year earlier.
D&B’s latest Business Expectations Survey shows the sales index sliding downwards from 4.5 points to 3.5, with the number of business anticipating increased sales activity dropping from 18 per cent in the previous quarter to 11 per cent in Q4. With just two per cent of businesses planning to increase spending next quarter, the capital investment index has remained in negative territory and relatively unchanged at -1.3 points. Additionally, with just three per cent of companies intending to hire new staff in the final quarter of the year, the employment index has failed to move into a positive range, sitting at -2.8 points compared -3.3 a quarter earlier.
To read the full story click on this link: DB Business Expectations Survey – Dec quarter 2013 – interim
Source: D&B Australia