Retail trade picks up in April
Retail trade picks up in April

Shoppers may have re-found their mojo with new figures showing a pick-up in retail sales.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics reported this morning that retail sales rose 1.1 per cent in April, after a 0.3 per cent drop the previous month.

Victorians led the way with sales their up 2.8 per cent while Queensland retail sales lifted 1.8 per cent.

Retail activity in WA improved 0.6 per cent, led by a firm increase in food sales.

Sales through WA department stores jumped by 7.4 per cent, although sales through cafes and restaurants dropped 4.3 per cent.

And in a further sign that the economy is turning around, international trade figures showed the country selling more overseas than it bought.

The nation ran a trade surplus of $1.6 billion in April, slightly down on the March result.

It was driven by a one per cent lift in exports, with rural goods up 6 per cent.

Imports also rose by one per cent, led by a 12 per cent lift in capital goods.

Yesterday's national accounts showed the economy shrank 1.2 per cent in the March quarter, due largely to a huge shortfall in exports caused by the summer of natural disasters.

The West Australian

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