World News

Inflation subdued in the June quarter

Inflation subdued in the June quarter

Australia's jobs market has strengthened in recent months - recording the largest back-to-back gain in full-time jobs in nearly three decades; yet underemployment and under-utilization remain elevated, suggesting continued slack and little likelihood of large wage increases in the near-term to fuel faster inflation.

The Australian bonds traded slightly on the downside Tuesday as investors wait to watch the country's consumer price-led inflation index (CPI) for the second-quarter of this year, scheduled to be released on July 26.

What if inflation rises and wages don't?

The most significant price rises for the quarter were medical and hospital services (+4.1 per cent), new dwelling purchase by owner-occupiers (+0.9 per cent) and tobacco (+1.0 per cent). The price gains were partially offset by falls in domestic travel costs (minus 3.2 per cent) and petrol prices (minus 2.5 per cent).

The RBA's trimmed mean is tipped to hold steady at 0.5% on quarter, and to ease to 1.8% on year from 1.9% in the three months prior.

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Bruce Hockman, chief economist at the ABS, summed up the result perfectly.

Despite the slow and steady progress back towards the RBA's inflation target for the core measure, financial markets have reacted to the weakness in the headline rate, briefly driving the Australian dollar back below the 79 cent level.

Australia will on Wednesday release Q2 numbers for consumer prices, highlighting a modest day for Asia-Pacific economic activity.

"In addition, the ABS continues to closely monitor the impact of Cyclone Debbie on fruit and vegetable prices".


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