Economy keeps growing strongly

The Westpac Leading Index is predicting that the economy will grow strongly over the next nine months. The Index reports that the economy expanded at an annualised rate of 5.6 per cent in August compared with a long term average of 4.3 per cent. Driving the increased expansion rate is consumer spending, business investment and strong employment growth. Figures released yesterday show that we have more money than ever with private sector wealth up by 6.1 per cent in the June quarter, taking wealth per capita to $408,000, an increase of $22,000 from the previous quarter. The Westpac Index has forecast that underlying inflation for September will have grown by 0.9 per cent in September which is widely thought to be sufficient to prompt the Reserve Bank to increase interest rates.