Labor

Every day there are people in the retail sector doing amazing things. For this reason, each year the NRA holds the National Retail Awards to honour those who have made extraordinary achievements in Australia’s second-largest sector.

I’m pleased to announce that this year’s event will take place on September 4 at The Star in Sydney. Although this may seem like a while away, nominations will be opening in a month’s time on April 15, so please start turning your attention to any retail worker you think deserves recognition.

In addition to the usual awards categories, this year will also include a new gong for the Training Retail Executive of the year. The premise behind this award is to recognise a company that has formulated an excellent training program and professional development for their employees. Providing career pathways is immensely beneficial for young workers and we’re delighted to add this title to the awards program.

Further information on the 2019 National Retail Awards evening can be found on the NRA website here.

Last week the ABS released its retail report for January 2019 and unfortunately it showed that sales remained slow for the first month of the year. Although the results were certainly modest overall, it was a significant improvement on the December 2018 report which saw a decline in turnover of 0.4 per cent.

The January statistics did vindicate the decision earlier in the week by the RBA to keep interest rates at record lows. We can expect the official cash rate to remain low until there is a pickup in spending, so hopefully consumers start to take advantage of the current low rate.

The ABS report should also send a message to the Federal Government to focus on encouraging consumer spending ahead of the budget on April 2. With an election around the corner, the Government would certainly want the economy to be ticking along and we hope they use the most important economic statement of the year to implement pro-business measures.

I hope you have a great week!