Australian retail sales unexpectedly fell in March and job advertisements dropped for a second month, sending the currency lower as traders see a 50-50 chance the central bank will resume cutting interest rates tomorrow.
Australia recorded its slowest core consumer price growth in 14 years last quarter, sending the nation’s currency lower as traders boosted bets the Reserve Bank will reduce interest rates to a record low next month.
Australia’s unemployment rate climbed in March to the highest level in more than three years, sending the local dollar and bond yields lower as traders added to bets the central bank will resume interest rate cuts.
General Motors Co.’s Holden division will cut about 500 jobs in Australia, saying the strong local dollar and currency devaluations in competing markets had made operations in the nation among the most expensive in the world.
Australian Treasurer Wayne Swan projected a higher-than-expected A$3.1 billion ($2.7 billion) surplus in three years on surging tax revenue from mining companies as the government prepares to call an election.
An expansion in Australia’s economy, now in its 20th year of growth as a mining investment boom intensifies, will boost inflation pressures in coming years, central bank Deputy Governor Ric Battellino said.