Oil and gas production, organic farming, online education and online shopping (the four Os) are all expected to soar in 2013, according to market research firm IBISWorld.
According to a recently released IBISWorld report, apartment and townhouse construction is also expected to rise, as strong population growth in the late 2000s fuels demand for housing. Home ownership is increasingly trending towards multi-unit apartments and townhouses, which offer an inner city lifestyle, suit smaller households and help avoid the high costs of residential land. Australand Property Group (ASX: ALZ) is expected to be one of the beneficiaries of this growing demand.
Getting back to the four Os, oil and gas production is expected to grow by 16% in 2013, driven by higher output and substantially higher global prices. We’ve already seen today, Woodside Petroleum (ASX: WPL) report record production and revenues for 2012, mainly thanks to its Pluto LNG plant. Production was up 31% over 2011, while revenues climbed 30% to US$6.2 billion.
Organic farming has grown at a compound rate of 8% per year since 2008, as consumers factor in health benefits and the environmental impact of their food choices. The industry is expected to grow at 12.5% this year, as consumers are more willing to pay a premium to ensure the products they buy are chemical and hormone free. Woolworths Limited (ASX: WOW) is looking to capitalise on the popularity of local and organic produce, and has started sourcing local products for its stores.
Online education is also expected to boom this year, with Australian revenues expected to reach$5.6 billion in 2013, a rise of over 10%. High-speed internet services, growing acceptance of online education, government support for students, and an increase in demand for convenient education, especially for working adults. Navitas Limited (ASX: NVT), a provider of educational services to both domestic and overseas students could be best placed to take advantage of this demand.
And last but not least, online shopping.
We’ve seen the disruption that online retailers have caused to traditional bricks-and-mortar stores in Australia. Retailers like Harvey Norman Holdings (ASX: HVN) have seen sales fall by up to 30% in recent times, as consumers opt for the convenience of buying products online. Further structural change to the industry is likely.
For companies in the gaming and vending machine business, wired telecommunications carriers, mineral explorers, printing and publishing and recorded media publishing sectors, IBISWorld expects their industries to decline in the year ahead.
The Foolish bottom line
Whether the experts will be correct is unknown, although some of their guesses appear to have a modicum of commonsense about them. We know the resources sector is facing decreasing investment, while commodity prices, in general, have been falling. As traditional sources of oil and gas dry up, new sources have sprouted, while the demand for cleaner energy is only increasing.
Now, how do I convert my car to run on gas, while I’m sitting at home eating my organic chicken salad, sitting in front of my iPad, shopping online instead of doing that assignment for my online course?
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Motley Fool writer/analyst Mike King owns shares in Woolworths. The Motley Fool’s purpose is to help the world invest, better. Take Stock is The Motley Fool’s free investing newsletter. Packed with stock ideas and investing advice, it is essential reading for anyone looking to build and grow their wealth in the years ahead. Click here now to request your free subscription, whilst it’s still available. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.