Business confidence dipped in September despite marginally improved conditions, according to a survey of Australian companies.
National Australia Bank’s index of business conditions, compiled from a monthly survey of more than 400 companies, rose 1.0 point to +2 while its index of confidence fell 1.0 point to 0.
“This suggests that activity in the business sector has slowed and we fear the risk that this spreads to both investment and employment intentions,” NAB economist Alan Oster said.
NAB’s analysts said the survey, which was conducted between September 18 and 30, indicated that cuts to the cash rate in June and July did not provide a solid boost in sentiment.
“Recent rate cuts as well as the tax refunds appear to have driven some improvement in the retail sector, but with conditions remaining deeply negative it is unlikely to have been enough support to see a material turn-around in the sector,” Mr Oster said.