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Retail Trade, Australia, Preliminary

Contains preliminary monthly aggregate estimates of retail turnover in Australia

Reference period
June 2020
Released
22/07/2020

Key statistics

  • The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 2.4% ($694.7m) from May 2020 to June 2020.
  • In seasonally adjusted terms, Australian turnover rose 8.2% in June 2020 compared with June 2019. 

Main features

This release provides a preliminary estimate for Australian retail turnover for June 2020. This estimate is compiled from the monthly Retail Business Survey and is based on preliminary data provided by businesses that make-up approximately 80% of total retail turnover and is therefore subject to revision. The final monthly estimate will be published in Retail Trade, Australia (cat. no. 8501.0) on 4 August 2020.

Preliminary June key figures

 June 2020May 2020 to June 2020
$m% change
Turnover at current prices
 Seasonally Adjusted
29 666.1
2.4
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Preliminary June key points

Current prices

  • The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 2.4% ($694.7m) from May 2020 to June 2020.
  • In seasonally adjusted terms, Australian turnover rose 8.2% in June 2020 compared with June 2019. This compares to an average annual movement in 2019 of 2.7%.
     
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  • There were large increases in turnover in Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services, and Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing. While some restrictions on trade remain, many businesses saw a full month of trade in June, having been closed for the first week of May 2020.
  • Rises in Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services exceeded 20% for the second consecutive month, but will remain 17% below the levels of June 2019, while Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing rose around 19%, remaining 6% below June 2019 levels.
  • Food retailing rose 0.9% following a 7.2% month-on-month rise in May, and remains elevated in through-the-year terms.
  • Analysis of supermarket scanner data shows that compared to June 2019, Perishable goods rose 14.4%, Non-perishable goods 12.4%, and All other products 7.8%. The annual growth reflects a continuation of more food being prepared and consumed at home due to social distancing. At the end of the June month there was some evidence of stockpiling of goods such as toilet paper, flour, rice and pasta. At the aggregate level, stockpiling is most evident in Victoria.
  • Household goods retailing fell in June 2020 although remains 23% above June 2019 levels.
  • Department stores saw a significant fall after a large rise in May 2020 in seasonally adjusted month-on-month terms.
     

Data notes

Caution should be exercised when interpreting preliminary estimates as they may be significantly different to the final published estimates. This is due to several factors:

  • Estimates are based on preliminary data provided by businesses that make-up approximately 80% of total retail turnover.
  • Where respondents have not yet provided their data, it is estimated (or 'imputed') based on previous responses or averages from similar responding units. The level of imputation in preliminary estimates is significantly higher than for final estimates.
  • The quality of imputation for preliminary releases may also be poorer than for final estimates, due to the higher level of non-response. Furthermore, historical imputes which are based on data from previous months, may not accurately reflect changes in the economy due to recent events.
  • Changes to imputation methods have been made from the March monthly release to ensure non-respondents are more accurately reflected by the responding units in the current COVID-19 environment.
  • Until February 2020 Retail Trade used the concurrent seasonal adjustment method, meaning that seasonal factors were re-estimated each time a new data point becomes available. If not appropriately accounted for, unusual real-world events, such as COVID-19, can distort estimates calculated using this method. From March 2020, seasonal factors are calculated using data up to and including February 2020, then projected from March 2020 onwards. This approach, known as the forward factor method, ensures that the seasonal factors are not distorted by COVID-19 impacts.