CANBERRA, AAP – The high level of petrol prices continues to gnaw away at household budgets and has raised concerns among Australians about the inflation outlook.
Billions of dollars are predicted to be spent during next weekend’s so-called Black Friday-Cyber Monday sales where Australians can snap up bargains and shop early for Christmas.
However, new confidence data will give an indication of how wide people are prepared to open their wallets.
The weekly ANZ-Roy Morgan consumer confidence index is released on Tuesday, a pointer to future household spending.
Confidence fell 2.8 per cent last week at a time when people are worried about the inflation outlook and what that might mean for interest rates.
The consumer inflation expectations index also returned to the seven-year high seen in October of five per cent.
Since that result, figures last week also showed while annual wages growth picked up to 2.2 per cent as of the September quarter, it still lagged the rate of inflation at three per cent.
The Australian Institute of Petroleum said the national average unleaded pump price rose 1.7 cents a litre last week to 166.2 cent a litre, only just shy of a peak set in October.
The Australian Automobile Association’s latest transport affordability index released on Sunday showed weekly transport costs have for the first time risen above $400 for the average metropolitan household.
Rising fuel prices were a significant contributor to these increased costs.