ABS Update: GDP fell 0.3% in the March quarter

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The Australian Gross Domestic Product (GDP) fell 0.3% in seasonally adjusted, chain volume terms in the March quarter 2020. In addition, growth has slowed to 1.4% through the year, according to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) on 3 June 2020.

The fall in GDP is a result of a number of significant events this quarter, including the economic impacts of the bushfires and natural disasters which occurred earlier this year, as well as the outbreak of COVID-19.

The ATO has released a breakdown of the key contributors to this quarter’s GDP and their fluctuations:

  • Public demand contributed 0.3% to GDP (driven by a 1.8% rise in Government final consumption expenditure)
  • Private demand detracted 0.8% from GDP (due to 1.1% fall in household final consumption expenditure)
  • Net trade contributed 0.5% to GDP
  • Imports of goods fell 3.9%
  • Imports of services fell 13.6% (especially travel services)
  • Exports of services fell 12.8%
  • Household saving to income ratio rose to 5.5% (driven by 6.2% increase in social assistance benefits in government support packages)
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