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In Australia, Falling Home Prices Now Hitting Retail Sales.

> If retailers were not in enough strife already, it now appears falling house prices have joined low wage and price growth, as well as declining household savings, in their increasingly large list of worries.

> Monthly retail sales figures have disappointed again, rising just 0.2 per cent in September on a seasonally adjusted basis.

> More disturbingly, sales were up just 0.2 per cent across the three months of the September quarter.

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> With the exception of cafes, restaurants and takeaway, the other key discretionary sectors such as household goods, clothing and department stores reported either flat or negligible sales growth.

> "The subdued rise in real retail sales in Q3 suggests that households are starting to feel the pinch from rising petrol prices and the slowdown in the property market," Capital Economics analyst Marcel Thieliant said.

Recession Coming Up

A recession cannot be far off. It's likely to be a lengthy one as the burden of debt and rising mortgage payments takes an even bigger bite out of Australia's economy.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock