IN CHARTS: Melbourne’s first stage of reopening

Restrictions on services and hospitality eased in Melbourne on Friday 22 October after another extended lockdown.

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ANZ Research has compared ANZ-observed spending for Friday 22 October to Sunday 24 October with previous Friday-Sunday spending in Melbourne and Sydney to see how so-called “freedom spending” may contribute to economic recovery.

"The spike in Sydney spending when retail reopened is a good sign for further increases in Melbourne spend”

You can track some of the spending data highlights in the charts below.

Beauty spending in Melbourne rose by 188 per cent and was 2 per cent above pre-lockdown spending. This was a little less than what was seen in Sydney (36 per cent above pre lockdown) as it reopened.

This may reflect density requirements in Melbourne and the shorter overall lockdown compared with Sydney.

Melbourne dining increased 43 per cent last weekend compared to the weekend before but was still around 38 per cent down compared with pre-lockdown conditions. Dining spending over the last two weekends in Sydney has hovered at around 85-90 per cent of pre-lockdown spending.

Restrictions of 20 patrons indoors in Melbourne cafes and restaurants likely slowed the increase in dining spending compared with the spike in Sydney.

ANZ Research expects a much stronger impact on Melbourne’s total spending after Friday 29 October when non-essential retail, gyms, entertainment and sports facilities reopen.

The strong increases in Sydney spending across these categories are a good sign for the second stage of Melbourne’s reopening.

In particular, non-essential retail was a key driver of Sydney’s 25 per cent increase in total ANZ-observed spending on its first open weekend. ANZ Research expects a similar surge for Melbourne once retailers reopen.

Adelaide Timbrell is Senior Economist at ANZ

The views and opinions expressed in this communication are those of the author and may not necessarily state or reflect those of ANZ.

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