The author has been described by News Ltd as an "iconoclast", "Svengali", a pollie's "economist muse", and "pungently accurate". Fairfax says he is a "Renaissance man" and "one of Australia’s most respected analysts." Stephen Koukoulas concludes that he is "85% right", and "would make a great Opposition leader." Terry McCrann claims the author thinks "‘nuance’ is a trendy village in the south of France", but can be "scintillating" when he thinks "clearly". The ACTU reckons he’s "an enigma wrapped in a Bloomberg terminal, wrapped in some apparently well-honed abs."

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Ooops: Retail sales boom to highest level in 23 months

CommSec reports:

"Good news for retailers with the latest Commonwealth Bank Business Sales Indicator (BSI) recording the strongest growth in almost two years. The BSI – a key measure of economy-wide spending – rose just by just over 0.2 per cent in trend terms in September – the strongest increase in 23 months.

The seasonally adjusted measure of the BSI also posted the third increase in sales in four months, lifting 0.2 per cent in September after a 0.6 per cent increase in August.

There was further encouragement at a sectoral level with just four of the 20 industry sectors contracting in trend terms in September while sales were broadly unchanged in two sectors. Strongest gains were recorded by Wholesale Distributors & Manufacturers, Business Services and Repair Services. Five of the eight states recorded higher sales in trend terms, led by Northern Territory.

The Commonwealth BSI is obtained by tracking the value of credit and debit card transactions processed through Commonwealth Bank merchant facilities. The BSI covers spending broadly across the economy rather than just retail sales, including spending on automobiles, personal services and airlines."