Australia's industrial sector in undergoing a moderate recovery in the September quarter after a prolonged period of contraction, the latest Westpac-ACCI Survey of Industrial Trends showed Thursday.
The Westpac-ACCI actual composite rose to 52.4 in the September quarter from 48.3 in the June quarter. This is the first above-50 reading since the March quarter 2011.
Westpac said that the improvement in the actual composite is best regarded as evidence of the manufacturing sector stabilising. The rate cuts provided by the Reserve Bank over the past year have benefited the sector directly and indirectly, the report said.
Also, the survey respondents anticipate the modest growth experienced in the September quarter will extend into the December quarter. The corresponding index, the expected composite, rose to 53.7 in the September quarter from 51.5 three months ago.
Expectations of 'general business conditions' also improved significantly during the period, with a net 11 percent of respondents now expecting that conditions will improve over the next six months. This was in contrast to the net 21 percent of respondents who expected conditions to deteriorate in the June quarter.
The report also noted that the global conditions remained challenging and the high Australian dollar continued to erode competitiveness.
by RTT Staff Writer
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