7 Jun 2017

Australia matches world record in economic growth

4:48 pm on 7 June 2017

Australia has reported a record-equalling 103rd consecutive quarter of economic growth.

Photo of Sydney Harbour from pixabay.com


The trend makes it a total of 26 years without recession to claim the joint global top growth spot along with the Netherlands.

Official data showed gross domestic product (GDP) grew at a quarterly rate of 0.3 percent to take the annual rate to 1.7 percent - the slowest since late 2009.

"I felt a sense of relief that the number was positive. There is no denying that the Aussie economy has slowed down over the course of the last year. So it's a relief that it's a positive number," said AMP Capital Investors chief economist Shane Oliver.

Australia hasn't had a recession since 1991 and its run of growth has been fuelled by booming commodity prices, particularly coal and minerals, which are in hot demand by China's booming economy.

However, the pace of growth has slowed as China has also slowed and prices for iron ore, copper, and coal slumped, while drought and other natural disasters have hit agricultural produce.

By comparison, New Zealand's growth has outpaced its trans-Tasman neighbour and biggest trade partner in recent years.

The annual growth rate has averaged more than 3 percent for the past couple of years and is expected to remain elevated on the back of booming tourism, construction, and a recovery in farm export prices.

New Zealand growth numbers for the first three months of the year are due on 15 June, with expectations for a rise of about 0.5 percent on the previous quarter and an annual rate of just below 3 percent.