Consumer confidence “lacklustre” says ANZ-Roy Morgan index
The latest barometer of consumer confidence from ANZ Bank and research firm Roy Morgan shows a slight increase in optimism after four weeks of decline. Their index rose 0.9 per cent in the week up to last Sunday but remains below its position six months ago and is 2 per cent lower than it was a year ago. Positivity for the economy over the next year and over the next five years both increased but again are still below the average. ANZ chief economist Warren Hogan commented that despite low interest rates and higher house prices the big issue for Australian households is the labour market: “Households remain concerned with the economic outlook in an environment of soft wage growth and ongoing job losses in the resources and manufacturing sectors. We expect a turnaround in the labour market is the key to a sustained improvement.”
Source: ANZ-Roy Morgan

Housing analysts look for your ‘feel good factor’
While data on sales volumes, house prices and building intentions continue to be a big part of analysing the state of Australia’s housing market there’s another important metric that experts want to know; how are you feeling? With bumpy economic conditions the confidence of the consumer is a key part in predicting trends in the housing market; even the Reserve Bank of Australia uses data on public sentiment. Unsurprisingly when people are feeling confident in their own finances and those of the country they are more likely to buy homes and major economic changes such as interest rate adjustments can make a big difference to sentiment. Tim Lawless of research firm CoreLogic RP Data told Perth Now that after 11 months of decline in confidence the RBA rate cut earlier this year dragged sentiment back to a ‘neutral’ position: “There is a demonstrable correlation between housing market performance and the level of consumer sentiment” he said.
Source: Perth Now

Brisbane’s inner-south tipped as construction hot spot
The inner-south neighbourhoods of Brisbane are tipped to see a lot of construction this year with the 4101 postcode already seeing fast building of new homes. Over recent years the city’s inner-north has been where the action is for home building but now it’s the turn of areas such as South Brisbane, West End and Annerley. Rob Honeycombe from Bees Knees City Realty told the Courier Mail that rental homes increased by 5 per cent in the December quarter with 300 new units added to the inventory. Young couples, professionals and families are among the groups keen to move to the growing area.
Source: Courier Mail