Perth, Western Australia

Western Australia’s annual population growth rate has lifted slightly to 1 per cent but continues to lag the national growth rate of 1.6 per cent. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reported on 19 September that WA’s population had increased to 2.615 million people as at March 2019. The growth in WA was helped by a surge in net overseas migration, which added 6,335 to the state’s population in the March quarter and 16,112 people in the past year.

Natural increase continued to be a steady contributor, adding 17,891 people over the year. This was partly offset by interstate migration, with a net 8,025 people moving from WA to other states over the year. The encouraging part of this statistic is that the population loss from net interstate migration is slowing. In the two prior years, WA lost 12,040 people and 14,020 people.

Western Australia has bucked the national trend and recorded a 0.6 per cent rise in retail spend for July, underpinned by gains in the hospitality sector, according to the latest data from the ABS.

WA retail turnover for July reached a seasonally adjusted $2.89 billion, led by cafes, restaurants, and catering and takeaway services increasing their turnover by 1.4 per cent to $483.5 million. This category of retail reached turnover of $482.8 million in December, but it fell to $459.2 million in May. Since the dip in May, however, there has been a steady increase.

 (Source: ABS/WA Business News)

The established Perth residential market has seen a continued reduction in supply with the number of properties on the market at 13,814, down 10.5% from 15,441 at the same time in 2018. This is encouraging given this is generally a very popular time of year to market established properties in Perth. Weekly sales of 583 properties was up over 13% on 515 from the same time in 2018.

Lot sales data in the UDIA graph below shows an increase in sales volumes over August.

The rental vacancy rate is steady at 2.7% and the median rent is also steady at $360 per week. There are currently 6,482 properties available for rent, compared to 7,805 vacant properties at the same time in 2018. This ongoing fall in vacant rental properties and established properties for sale is a clear sign that the oversupply in housing stock is slowly returning to normal conditions. (Source: UDIA/REIWA)

Western Australia’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell by 0.1% to 5.8% in August. The only states with lower unemployment in August were Victoria and New South Wales at 4.9% and 4.3% respectively.

(Source: ABS)

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