Retail is showing signs of life at big shopping centres

By Chris Pash | 21 May 2020

Retail outlets at big shipping centers have started to open, an early sign of increased economic activity.

Almost two-thirds (64%) of stores at Westfield Bondi Junction were trading last weekend, according to a survey by analysts at Morgan Stanley reported by industry journal Ragtrader

This was higher than the week n before when 45% of stores were open.

The analysts counted a total of 304 retail tenancies during their visit with 192 trading.

Foot traffic was comparable to a typical weekend day, according to the report, and two to three times higher than last week on their estimates.

A number of stores had queues to enter, including Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Tiffany & Co, Cotton On Body and Lululemon.

Economists at CommSec say retail sales are likely to bounce higher this month as more stores re-open.

"The good news is that the ‘COVID curve’ is still flat, consumer confidence is improving and people are returning to their workplaces," says CommSec.

"It's baby steps. But Australia is moving in the right direction. Still, as health authorities stress, social distancing needs to be maintained together with good hand hygiene." 

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