Consumers can expect better than usual winter sale bargains this year as retailers discount heavily to keep customers coming through the doors.
“The half yearly sales are taking on the flavour of the Boxing Day sales with retailers pulling out all the stops to give shoppers terrific opportunities,” said Australian National Retailers Association (ANRA) CEO Margy Osmond.
“Retail hasn’t yet recovered from the slowing of the economy generated by the GFC and this time last year the Federal Government stimulus package created a buffer that kept consumers spending and the retail pot bubbling.
“That was important for the economy, but this year retailers need to keep sales ticking over and consumers are more than a little cautious about spending money in a climate of interest rate uncertainty,” she said.
Better than expected retail figures released yesterday showed retail was up by 0.6 per cent in March (seasonally adjusted), but Osmond warned the figures obviously do not take into consideration economic developments in May including the low Australian dollar and a dip in consumer confidence.
“Retailers have been discounting all year, so the savings consumers can expect in the mid-year sales are considerable. Traditionally, the Boxing Day sales are the time most shoppers make those big household purchases and buy up big in the fashion zone.
“Now I think we are seeing the first signs that the half yearly sales will have a similar effect with people waiting for these sales to take advantage of great discounts,” she said.
“For a number of years savvy parents have been doing their Christmas shopping at the mid-year toy sales and putting things on lay-by to go under the Christmas tree much later in the year.”