Wednesday, 8 June 2005

German output up, orders down in April, RBA leaves rate unchanged

The global economy continues to produce rather downbeat news.

Industrial output in Germany rose 1.1 percent in April, its first rise in three months. However, factory orders fell 2.9 percent in April, pointing to likely weakness in industrial production ahead.

Meanwhile, Australian businesses are preparing themselves for their worst start to a new financial year since the 1991 recession, according to credit agency Dun and Bradstreet's June survey of business expectations. The survey found that sales and profit expectations for the coming quarter were the lowest since the 1991 recession, while expectations for employment growth were the worst in two years.

Not surprisingly, the Reserve Bank of Australia left its cash rate unchanged at 5.5 percent today. National Australia Bank chief economist Alan Oster was quoted in a news report today as saying that the reserve bank's next move could be to lower rates.

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