The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released its preliminary monthly aggregate estimates of retail turnover in Australia.

The figures from Australia Retail Sales showed that the seasonally adjusted estimate rose 1.6% ($460.5m) from September 2020 to October 2020.

Australia Retails Sales

Australia Retail Turnover Rose

It is also highlights that the seasonally adjusted terms, Australian turnover rose 7.3% in October 2020 compared with October 2019. Excluding Victoria, sales are 11.9% higher than October 2019. 

Australia Retail Sales

Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services led the rises, although there were also rises for Other retailing, and Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing. Household goods retailing was relatively unchanged, maintaining recent strength. 

Victoria led the rises in all industries, except for Food retailing, as stores reopened throughout October. Victoria saw a rise of 5.2%, although it remains 5.7% below the levels of October 2019

NSW rose 1.6% after falls in August and September 2020. Western Australia led the rises in annual terms, with turnover 15.1% above October 2019.

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2020, November 20). Retail Trade, Australia, Preliminary. Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australian Government. Retrieved November 20, 2020.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) released data for UK Public sector finances October 2020.

The data indicates that Public sector net borrowing (excluding public sector banks, PSNB ex) is estimated to have been £22.3 billion in October 2020.

The ONS stated that is “£10.8 billion more than in October 2019, which is both the highest October borrowing and the sixth-highest borrowing in any month since monthly records began in 1993” for for UK Public sector finances.

UK Public Sector Net Borrowing OCT: £22.3 billion

The UK Public Sector Net Borrowing shows the relationship between UK public sector monthly income and expenditure.

Central government bodies are estimated to have spent £71.3 billion on day-to-day activities (current expenditure) in October 2020, £6.4 billion more than in October 2019; this growth includes £1.3 billion in Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and £0.3 billion in Self Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) payments.

Public sector net borrowing (PSNB ex) in the first seven months of this financial year (April to October 2020) is estimated to have been £214.9 billion, £169.1 billion more than in the same period last year and the highest public sector borrowing in any April to October period since records began in 1993.

Debt to GDP ratios levels last seen 1960’s

Public sector net debt excluding public sector banks (PSND ex) rose by £276.3 billion in the first seven months of the financial year to reach £2,076.8 billion at the end of October 2020, or around 100.8% of gross domestic product (GDP); debt to GDP ratios in recent months have reached levels last seen in the early 1960s.

General government net borrowing in the first seven months of this financial year (April to October 2020) is estimated to have been around 9.9% GDP.

The impact of the coronavirus on the public finances

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has had a substantial impact on public sector borrowing. Official OBR estimates (XLS, 201KB) published on 21 August 2020 indicate that the £214.9 billion borrowed by the public sector in the financial year-to-October 2020 could reach £372.2 billion by the end of March 2021.

Central government tax and national insurance receipts (combined) in the seven months-to-October 2020 fell by £38.3 billion (or 9.7%) compared with the same period in 2019, while government support for individuals and businesses during the pandemic contributed to an increase of £123.5 billion (or 28.5%) in central government day-to-day (or current) spending.

UK Public Sector Borrowing

The extra funding required to support government coronavirus support schemes combined with reduced cash receipts and a fall in gross domestic product (GDP) have all helped push public sector net debt as a ratio of GDP to levels last seen in the early 1960s.

Source: ONS

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v3.0.

The ONS Office for National Statistics released data for UK retail sales October 2020.

The ONS reported that there an increase of 5.8% year-on-year growth(YoY) rate for UK retails sales and that “the feedback from a range of businesses suggesting that consumers had started Christmas shopping earlier this year”.

The data is an estimate of retail sales in volume and value terms, seasonally and non-seasonally adjusted in Great Britain for October 2020.

UK Retail Sales Volumes Increased

Compared to last month, September, retail sales volumes increased by 1.2% which made it the sixth consecutive month of growth for the Retail Industry.

The ONS further reported the “total retail sales values (excluding fuel) increased by 7.9% when compared with February which was driven by a strong increase in sales online at 52.8% in comparison to reduced store sales at negative 3.3%” and that “growth in the volume of sales for non-store retailing at 6.4%, household goods stores at 3.2% and department stores at 3.1%”.


Source: ONS