Australia Westpac-MI leading index dropped from -0.84% to -0.92% in November. Growth rate was, thus, in negative territory for the fourth consecutive month. The data is consistent with below trend growth well into 2023. Drivers of weakness are the RBA interest rate and commodity prices.
Westpac expects another 25bps rate hike by RBA in February, “give the outlook for wages; inflation and economic growth”. It expects wages and inflation challenges to persist through early months of 2023, requiring “further increase of 25bps in both March and May.