Household spending rises again in September

Media Release

Household spending continued to rise in September 2022, increasing by 28.0 per cent compared to the same time last year, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). 

Jacqui Vitas, ABS head of macroeconomic statistics, said September 2022 saw the 19th consecutive month of increases through the year in total household spending, with increases in all spending categories. 

“There continued to be strong increases coming off the back of last year’s COVID-19 Delta lockdowns. Spending in Clothing and footwear (up 73.1 per cent), Hotels, cafes and restaurants (up 60.6 per cent), and Transport (up 53.0 per cent) all saw strong increases due to reduced spending from lockdowns in these categories.”

In contrast, spending categories not as impacted by the lockdowns, such as Alcoholic beverages and tobacco (up 4.0 per cent) and Food (up 3.3 per cent) saw only small rises compared with September 2021. 

Pre-pandemic comparison

Compared to pre-pandemic September 2019, total household spending was 19.8 per cent higher in current price, calendar adjusted terms.

The largest increases over this period were in Clothing and footwear (up 35.1 per cent), Recreation and culture (up 31.4 per cent), and Furnishings and household equipment (up 24.7 per cent). Food also saw increased spending, with a rise of 17.6 per cent.

This line graph shows the household spending index numbers in current price, calendar adjusted terms. 

State results

All states and territories saw increases in household spending in September 2022, compared to September 2021, with the Australian Capital Territory (up 71.4 per cent), Victoria (up 38.6 per cent), and New South Wales (up 37.7 per cent) recording the highest increases in spending through the year. All three jurisdictions experienced COVID-19 lockdowns this time last year.

Compared to pre-pandemic September 2019 estimates, all states showed rises in household spending with Queensland (up 25.4 per cent), Western Australia (up 24.2 per cent), and South Australia (up 23.1 per cent) showing the strongest rises.

This bar graph shows the change in total household spending for all the states and territories when comparing the September 2022 to the September 2021 and 2019 (pre-pandemic) estimates. 

The September quarter 2022

Total household spending increased in each month of the September quarter 2022 when compared to the September quarter 2021, with the month of August having the highest increase (29.1 per cent). Spending on Alcoholic beverages and tobacco in July was the only category to record a decrease with a fall of 0.4 per cent. 

Compared to September quarter 2021, total household spending was 27.1 per cent higher in current price, calendar adjusted terms.  

This graph shows the TTY monthly and quarterly changes in household spending across all the COICOP categories covered by the indicator throughout the September quarter 2022. 

Media notes

  • The indicator is produced using aggregated and de-identified card and bank transactions from banking and financial institutions.

  • The indicator includes nine of the 13 key divisions classified according to the Classification of Individual Consumption by Purpose (COICOP).

  • The indicator is produced in current price original and current price calendar adjusted terms only.

  • Until the indicator is seasonally adjusted it is advised to focus on through the year comparisons (e.g. September 2022 compared to September 2021). 

  • Significant events such as COVID-19 can lead to very strong through the year rises. Care should be given when comparing periods with these events.

  • Care should be given when comparing Household Spending Indicator estimates with other ABS products.

  • When reporting ABS data you must attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or the ABS) as the source.

  • For media requests and interviews, contact the ABS Media Team via (8.30am-5pm Mon-Fri).

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