Western Australia remains Australia’s best performing economy, leading the way on housing finance, retail trade and equipment investment, according to a new report.
CommSec’s quarterly State of the States report shows while the state remains on top, it has slipped in indicators such as unemployment.
The ACT had overtaken the Northern Territory as Australia’s second strongest economy, driven by housing finance, equipment investment and population growth. The ACT is the third strongest state on unemployment, up from eighth place in the last report.
Remaining in the middle of the rankings were New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland, which showed little change. New South Wales was the strongest on unemployment and the third strongest on population growth. Victoria is the second strongest on housing finance and unemployment, and Queensland has performed well on economic growth, equipment, investment, construction work done and retail spending.
South Australia remained at seventh place, while Tasmania had the nation’s worst performing economy.
The report assessed the states and territories on eight key indicators, including economic growth, retail spending, unemployment, population growth, housing finance and dwelling commencements.
Chief economist for CommSec Craig James said that all economies would lift once the uncertainty of the federal election was finally out of the way. He added that there would be further growth in the housing sector.
“While new investment in mining and engineering construction is easing, the housing sector is providing a source of new growth, especially in regions where population growth is strongest,” he said.
New South Wales treasurer Mike Baird said the report showed significant improvements in the New South Wales housing sector, with the state jumping two places on the measure of dwelling starts.
“Dwelling starts are over 16 per cent above decade averages, which is further proof that the New South Wales government’s targeted housing incentives are working,” he said.