Victoria holds the mantle of the best performing economy for the first time in two years. Image – Canva
  • Victoria leads other states and territories on relative unemployment and retail trade
  • Tasmania has slipped from the mantel following nine consecutive quarters in the top spot
  • CommSec has released its latest State of the States report

The garden state has taken out the top spot in the rankings of the best performing economies with the ACT not far behind, according to the latest quarterly CommSec State of the States report.

This comes as Tasmania’s nine quarters dominating the podium come to an end with the state slipping to the third position. Tasmania is followed by Queensland not far behind in the fourth position, with little separating the top four states.

Trailing behind the top four is Western Australia, South Australia and NSW’s economies, followed by the Northern Territory.

CommSec’s report analyses information from across Australia to provide an economic snapshot of each region. The research assesses performance in eight key areas including economic growth; retail spending; equipment investment; unemployment, construction work done; population growth; housing finance and dwelling commencements.

Although the report provides a ranking of each region, CommSec Chief Economist Craig James said there was little separating the country’s state and territory economies.

“Victoria may have moved to the top of the economic leader-board, but there is little to separate the top four economies,

Craig James, CommSec Chief Economist

Victoria surpasses other states and territories in relative unemployment and retail trade. The state also ranks second when it comes to both construction work done and housing finance as well and places third on dwelling starts.

“Victoria leads the way on two of the eight economic indicators. But showing how even the rankings are, the ACT and South Australia also each lead other economies on two of the eight indicators.

“When looking at annual growth to get a guide on economic momentum, Queensland had annual growth rates that exceeded the national average on all of the eight indicators,” Mr James said.

Economic Growth

Other indicators aside, economic growth across the states tells a slightly different story.

Western Australia continues to take the lead in relative economic growth. In the year to March 2022, economic activity in Western Australia was 35.6% higher than the ‘normal’ or decade average level of output for the state.

Northern Territory follows with an output 28.1% above the ‘normal’ output.

The third spot is taken out by Tasmania, (up 27.9%) followed by Queensland (up 24.1%). The ACT is now fifth (up 23.0%), ahead of Victoria (up 20.8%), New South Wales (20.2%) and South Australia (19.9%).

“In terms of future economic performance, much will depend on how economies are affected by growing COVID-19 case numbers and also how they respond to a period of rising interest rates,” Mr James said.

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