Ipswich Chamber of Commerce president Brett Kitching
Ipswich Chamber of Commerce president Brett Kitching

Positive stats, confidence indicate upswing after 2012 low

THERE was further evidence last week that the Australian economy has begun the long road to economic recovery with more positive data released.

The further we go in 2013, the more apparent it is becoming that 2012 was the bottom of the Australian economic cycle.

Already year 2013 has seen strong increases in share prices, a relatively low unemployment rate, and marginal increases in house prices. Add to these stats the increase in consumer confidence and the signs are clear that an economic upswing is in place.

Despite a small drop in February, business confidence has increased from the lows of December 2012 according to the National Australia Bank's Monthly Business Survey.

The big economic news last week, however, was the jump in consumer confidence in Australia last month. Consumer confidence as measured by the Westpac-Melbourne Institute Index rose to its highest level since December 2010, and above the 20-year average.

Consumer confidence reported last month is more than 15% higher than the lows of 2012.

The return of stronger consumer confidence, combined with rising business confidence and low interest rates is a great framework for economic recovery and so it seems according to data for 2013. While there is still some way to go, the early signs for 2013 are highly encouraging.

All of this information is positive for Ipswich as the pluses of Ipswich being a growing population, growing residential and industrial developments, along with increasing and improving medical and education services, all combine well with improving consumer confidence in boosting the local economy.

Already there is positive information filtering through from the ICC Department of Economic Development and from various regional businesses that there has been a considerable improvement in Ipswich economic activity in 2013.

The combination of low unemployment and low interest rate environments should continue to propel this economic upswing in Ipswich and throughout Australia as we move further into year 2013, giving genuine hope for all for more prosperous times ahead.

UPCOMING EVENTS

Chamber Networking AFTER 5 - Thursday, April 18, at the Ipswich Turf Club starting at 5pm until 6.30pm. Free for members. RSVP by Tuesday, April 16.

Non-members may attend one Networking AFTER 5 event for free to experience one of the many benefits of being an Ipswich Chamber of Commerce Member.


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