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Business Conditions Survey: Mixed Outlook for Illawarra Businesses


Release Date: 19/02/2013
NSW businesses expect a rough year ahead with key indicators of business conditions, sales revenue, profits, exports and employment remaining in negative territory, according to the latest NSW Business Chamber NSW Business Conditions Survey.

Interestingly, the latest survey results indicate that conditions are easing for some businesses in the Illawarra. In comparison to NSW where trends are universally negative, more businesses in the Illawarra are seeing positive or constant trends in sales revenue, wage rates and number of employees.

“The results of this survey show that there are some pockets of good performance in the Illawarra economy, particularly in the professional, scientific and technical services and the financial and insurance services industries. It also shows that our business community is perhaps a little less pessimistic compared to other regions across NSW.” said Mike Halloran, interim CEO of the Illawarra Business Chamber.

“However, businesses in the Illawarra are still facing difficult conditions. Business owners are being slammed by a stubbornly high Australian dollar, a mining boom that is coming off the boil, and weak consumer confidence. I don’t see that changing in the near future which means business owners need to buckle down and be prepared to ride out a long storm.”

Mr Halloran said there were limited options business and government could take to influence global challenges such as the European financial crisis and the political impasse over debt and deficits in the USA, which were driving up the Australian dollar, but Australian governments did have policy tools available to reduce regulatory burdens and most importantly, the rapidly growing cost of electricity.

The NSW Business Conditions Survey of the Illawarra found that over the December quarter 2012:
  • 43% of businesses in the Illawarra reported an increase in sales revenue, compared to 28% across NSW.
  • Only 35% of businesses in the Illawarra reported a decrease in profits, compared to 47% across NSW.
  • 24% of businesses in the Illawarra reported an increase in the number of employees, compared to 14% across NSW.



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