Sluggish demand and carbon tax shake ACT businesses
June 30, 2011
Weak consumer spending and the proposed carbon tax have given ACT small businesses reason for concern, according to the Sensis® Business Index released today, but they remain the nation’s most optimistic.
Report author Ms Christena Singh said the ACT business confidence indicator had fallen sharply during the quarter as it had in many other states and territories.
“ACT businesses have experienced a weak quarter of trading and expect worse conditions over the coming quarter. On top of this, we are also starting to see concerns surface about the proposed carbon tax and the long-term outlook for the Australian economy,” she said.
Given the topical nature of a proposed carbon tax in Australia, the Sensis® Business Index also asked ACT small businesses specifically about their views.
Thirty-four per cent of ACT businesses said they did not understand the proposed carbon tax, while 46 per cent said they partially understood. Twenty per cent said they had a thorough understanding.
Fifty-two per cent of ACT small businesses said a carbon tax would have a negative impact on their business, while 40 per cent believe it would have no impact. Eight per cent believe it would have a positive impact.
According to the findings, ACT small businesses are most concerned about a carbon tax impacting on costs, with lower consumer demand and a negative impact on the economy also key reasons.
For those ACT businesses that felt the carbon tax would have a negative impact on their business, nine per cent said they would consider modifying products and services, while six cent said they would look at introducing new products as well as decreasing staff, and two per cent would look at selling or closing their business.
ACT businesses are the nation’s least likely to consider selling or closing their business as a result of a carbon tax (two per cent compared with a national average of nine per cent).
Key ACT findings from the June 2011 Sensis® Business Index:
· Business confidence fell from 62 per cent to 47 per cent (28 per cent nationally)
· Profitability fell from negative four per cent to negative 12 per cent (negative14 per cent nationally)
· The sales indicator fell, down seven percentage points to negative six per cent (negative14 per cent nationally)
· Overall employment by ACT small businesses weakened during the quarter, taking the indicator from two per cent to a flat zero per cent (one per cent nationally)
· Support for the ACT Government was steady at negative 14 per cent.
Sensis helps Australians find, buy and sell. Our integrated network of local search and digital marketing solutions delivers real, measurable business leads to Australian businesses. Sensis' multichannel network includes Yellow Pages®, White Pages®, the 1234 and 12456 Call Connect voice services, Whereis® digital mapping solutions and request-for-quote service, Quotify.
This increasingly diverse network spans print, online, voice, mobile, iPhone, iPad, Android, Telstra's T-Hub and satellite navigation, and information can also be shared from online to mobile and social networking sites. Sensis helps ensure our advertisers are found by more customers than ever by managing their presence across a growing number of advertising platforms including search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo!.
® Registered trade mark of Telstra Corporation Limited (ABN 33 051 775 556). Sensis Pty Ltd (ABN 30 007 423 912) has responsibility for production of the Yellow Pages® and White Pages® directories and related products on behalf of Telstra Corporation Limited.
® & ™ Registered trade mark and trade mark of Telstra Corporation Limited (ABN 33 051 775 556).