Retail sales have been one of the missing elements in the Australian economic story over the past few years.
Australians have been saving and paying off their mortgages, and not spending as they might have been expected with Reserve Bank interest rates at generational lows.
So many hoped that last month’s 0.8% rise in retail sales was the start of a much needed lift in spending.
The good news is that retail sales rose a seasonally adjusted 0.5% in October against the markets expectation of a 0.4%.
Certainly it is only an incremental beat of the market estimate but with the slight upgrade of the September number from 0.8% to 0.9% we now have four positive months in a row for the first time since 2011.
This looks like another sign that monetary policy in Australia is finally gaining some traction as the Reserve Bank continues to tell us.