The rout we had to have

As the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) announces that retail turnover fell 0.5 per cent in December, the ABC reports that $60 billion in value has now been dumped from the Australian stock market. That’s a 3.2 per cent fall.
Did the retail experience predicate or perhaps foretell the stock market rout?
Australian retail turnover fell 0.5 per cent in December 2017, seasonally adjusted, according to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Retail Trade figures.
This follows a 1.3 per cent rise in November 2017.
“There were falls for household goods retailing (-2.6 per cent) and other retailing (-1.8 per cent) following strong rises in the November month,” said Ben James, director of Quarterly Economy Wide Surveys. “Department stores (-0.6 per cent), cafes, restaurants and takeaways (-0.1 per cent), and clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (-0.1 per cent) also fell. Food retailing rose (0.7 per cent) in December 2017.”
In seasonally adjusted terms, there were falls in Victoria (-0.8 per cent), New South Wales (-0.4 per cent), Western Australia (-0.8 per cent), Tasmania (-1.6 per cent), the Australian Capital Territory (-1.5 per cent), South Australia (-0.3 per cent), and the Northern Territory (-0.7 per cent). Queensland was relatively unchanged (0.0 per cent) in seasonally adjusted terms.
The trend estimate for Australian retail turnover rose 0.2 per cent in December 2017 following a rise (0.2 per cent) in November 2017. Compared to December 2016 the trend estimate rose 2.0 per cent.
Online retail turnover contributed 4.8 per cent to total retail turnover in original terms in the December month 2017. In December 2016 online retail turnover contributed 3.8 per cent to total retail.
In seasonally adjusted volume terms, turnover rose 0.9 per cent in the December quarter 2017, following a rise of 0.1 per cent in the September quarter 2017. The rise in volumes was led by household goods (3.4 per cent), which benefitted from strong promotions and the release of the iPhone X in the November month.
In the meantime, as at Tuesday 6 February 1.30pm on the markets:

  • The Australian stock market opened to sharp falls.
  • The market reached a 3.2 per cent fall, dumping $60 billion in value.
  • The Dow Jones closed down by more than 1,100 points.
  • That’s the biggest single-day points drop in history.
  • In percentage terms, it’s a steep drop of 4.6 per cent.

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