The Australian Industry Group (AiG) has released its latest survey of the Australian services sector which has mirrored a recent run of slightly weaker data in some non-housing sectors parts of the economy, by falling back into negative territory against expectations it was beginning to do better.
AiG said services “slipped back into negative territory in March with falls across sales, stocks and employment.”
The fall was no small one either, with the index “6.2 points weaker at 48.9 in the month (readings below 50 indicate a contraction in activity).”
AiG Chief Executive Innes Willox said the fall was a sober reminder of the fragility of the broader economy.
“The services sector had lifted strongly in the previous month following a gradual build up of momentum from the last quarter of 2013,” he said.
It is disappointing economically, and it perhaps shows why the RBA has been so cautious in its language about the recovery and transition from mining investment to the broader economy.