CANBERRA, AAP – The mood among Sydneysiders improved further in the past week in anticipation of Monday’s reopening after more than 100 days of coronavirus lockdown.
The ANZ-Roy Morgan consumer confidence index – a pointer to future household spending – rose one per cent nationally in the past week, with sentiment up 2.5 per cent in Sydney.
In contrast, confidence fell 3.6 per cent in Melbourne.
“The dampened outlook in Melbourne may reflect rapidly rising COVID case numbers in the city,” ANZ head of Australian economics David Plank said.
“Given that more than 84 per cent of the adult population in Victoria has been vaccinated at least once, the daily cases should peak soon, which should provide a boost to Melbourne ahead of its reopening.”
Victoria is expected to lift its COVID-19 restrictions later this month.
The national index has now risen for five weeks in a row, to stand at its highest level since mid-July.
The survey, taken at the weekend, also found inflation expectations remain elevated with the four-week moving average edging up to 4.8 per cent, its highest since 2014.
It comes at a time of rising petrol prices, in tandem with increasing global oil prices.
The National Australia Bank will also issue its business survey for September later on Tuesday.
In August, business confidence – an indicator of future investment and job hiring – edged higher, but was still below its long-run average.
“Business confidence has been much more resilient this year than in the early stages of the pandemic, likely reflecting the strong momentum in the economy heading into the recent lockdowns and confidence that the vaccine rollout will see restrictions ease,” St George economist Matthew Bunny said.
“In September, while two of Australia’s major cities were in lockdown, there were improvements in the vaccine rollout which may have supported confidence.”