Australia’s economy has slowed further, with GDP growth tumbling under 2 per cent over the past year.
The economy grew at 0.4 per cent in first three months of the year, to be up 1.8 per cent over the year – the slowest growth since the September quarter in 2009.
While the quarterly figure was a step up from the moribund 0.2 per cent growth in final quarter of last year, it still fell below market expectations.
It was also much weaker than the 1 per cent growth recorded in the March quarter last year.
The result was dragged down by weak household spending, slowing further from last year and up just 1.8 per cent over the year, with households cutting back on their discretionary spending, particularly in new household items, recreation and hospitality.
Household spending contributed just 0.1 percentage point to growth.
The main driver in the weak growth profile was government spending on such things as health, aged care and the NDIS.
Overall government spending grew by 0.8 per cent over the quarter and 5.1 over the year.
More to come.