In Markets

Australian retail sales “worrisome”, says MasterCard

Australian retail sales will rise in 2016, but slowing wages growth and a cooling property market there and in China is dampening growth.

That’s the prediction based on MasterCard’s first monthly analysis of millions of card payments made on card terminals. It began tracking retail sales in Australia last year based on all transactions at terminals and claims this gives more accurate data than that provided by the Bureau of Statistics, which relies on surveys.

Sarah Quinlan, MasterCard’s New York-based senior vice-president of market insights, said retail sales year-on-year in Australia grew 3.2 percent in value in January compared to a year earlier. Year-on-year sales growth in January 2015 was running at about 6 percent.

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