The Courier-Mail



WHEN commenting on the economy we will once again (as we’ve been doing for the past eight years) preface that we are optimistic people.

As such, we have been generally out of step with the general pessimism of the overall community and commentato­rs in particular.

The latest case in point is last week’s 0.2 per cent economic growth figure for the June quarter, producing a sluggish 2 per cent annual growth … down on the 10-year average of 2.8 per cent and the 15-year average of 2.9 per cent.

Coupled with the correction on global share markets and the slowing of the Chinese economy, a dismal future for our economy has been painted.

There is no doubt things are a bit slow. But there are a few more optimistic points to shine a light on:

These latest growth figures are for the Marchto-June quarter, which is a look in the rear-vision mirror rather than what is happening now. Remember the turmoil around May? The winding back in mining investment and speculatio­n on the Federal Budget? It was an uncertain time.

The full benefit of that last interest rate cut is not reflected in this growth figure. Business and consumer confidence and retail sales have since risen.

Exports were the major drag on this latest result and since then the Australian dollar has dropped heavily, providing a real tonic for the sector.

We have now had a record-breaking 24 consecutiv­e years of positive economic growth.

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