New data released today by illion shows how the Australian government’s textbook stimulus response offset falling spending in the rest of the economy. During the COVID pandemic Australian consumer spending dropped very rapidly – down 21% below normal levels at the height of the pandemic. In response, the Government implemented a strong set of stimulus measures. These stimulus measures helped support overall spending in the economy.

Throughout April and July, the increased spending from recipients of government support helped to offset falling spending in the rest of the economy.

In the last two months, spending has returned to normal for people who did not receive support – which is the textbook outcome stimulus is supposed to achieve.

Without this stimulus, the economy would have fallen much further.

The Government’s stimulus for consumers has been effective in filling the gap in household spending during the height of the crisis.

In clubs and pubs, discretionary spend is the best indicator of good business results as most players only use their discretionary spend to gamble. The last two weeks has seen discretionary spend lifting again.


The data tracker for discretionary spend is available here.