CBA reveals the Australian economy's leading state amid COVID surge

The states and territories have all been impacted by the pandemic.

| More on:
a girl stands in an apple orchard holding two red apples in raised arms with a happy, celebratory look on her face with a large smile and a pretty country background to the picture.

Image source: Getty Images

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

Key points

  • COVID-19 variants continue to impact Australia's economy
  • Tasmania again leads the states in the past quarter's economic performance
  • Australia's unemployment rates are historically low across much of the country

Call it COVID-19. Or the coronavirus. Or Delta. Or Omicron.

Call it what you will, the virus has managed to spread rapidly across every Australian state over the past month. That's with the exception of Western Australia which hopes to stem the spread of COVID by remaining isolated from the rest of the country.

The pandemic is hitting supply chains, impacting international and interstate travel, and seeing some businesses forced to shutter, at least temporarily.

With that in mind, we take a look at the latest CommSec State of the States report to see which state is handling the COVID impacts best.

(CommSec is wholly owned by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (ASX: CBA).)

Tasmania leads the charge in COVID hampered economy

According to the CommSec report, released today, Tasmania once again leads the states – and territories – as the best performing economy. That's the 8th quarter in a row the prize goes to Tasmania.

As for the rest of the nation, CBA reports  "little separated the other states and territories before the [COVID] Omicron variant started influencing activity across the country".

Tasmania took first spot in 4 of the 8 categories CommSec uses to gauge economic performance. Namely: equipment investment, relative unemployment, retail spending, and dwelling starts.

The Tassie economy came in second spot in 2 other indicators: relative economic growth and construction work done.

A word from CommSec's chief economist

Commenting on the economic picture amid the continued spread of COVID, CommSec's chief economist, Craig James, said:

Australia's state and territory economies are in solid shape, well supported by strong fiscal and monetary stimulus. Unemployment rates are historically-low across much of the nation. Labour is in short supply across many industries – a reflection of current COVID-related self-isolation requirements and border restrictions.

Ahead, the country will continue to face challenges managing the latest Omicron wave with infrastructure spending continuing to be a key driver of growth in 2022.

As for Tasmania's best in show performance, James said other states could take the prize in upcoming quarters:

Tasmania has held top position in the performance rankings – solely or jointly – for eight consecutive quarterly surveys. While it is likely to remain on top in the short-term, much can change over 2022.

In fact, the Western Australian and South Australian economies have moved up the rankings, performing strongly during the pandemic, with the former benefiting from a surge in iron ore exports and prices, while the latter has benefited from strong government and business investment.

In differing ways, each state or territory will attempt to 'live with COVID' throughout 2022, potentially leading to major changes in the performance rankings.

The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

More on Economy

Dollar sign in yellow with a red falling arrow in front of a graph, symbolising a falling share price.
Share Market News

Why did the ASX 200 just sink to new 2-month lows on Friday?

It’s been a rocky week for the ASX 200. But why?

Read more »

Man looking concerned head in hands at laptop
Share Market News

Worried about an ASX stock market crash? Here are 5 reasons AMP says the bull market has legs

Despite the potential for a pullback, the ASX bull can keep on running, says AMP.

Read more »

A worried woman looks at her phone and laptop, seeking ways to tighten her belt against inflation.
Share Market News

Why is the ASX 200 copping such a beating today?

ASX 200 investors are favouring the sell button today.

Read more »

A man with arms spread yells as he plunges into a swimming pool.
Share Market News

Why is the ASX 200 tumbling on the latest US inflation print?

After three days of gains, the ASX 200 is taking a fall today.

Read more »

A man sits in deep thought with a pen held to his lips as he ponders his computer screen with a laptop open next to him on his desk in a home office environment.
Share Market News

Why is the ASX 200 ending the week with a whimper?

The ASX 200 is taking a beating on Friday. But why?

Read more »

Woman holding an orange and looking at the expensive grocery receipt, symbolising inflation.
Share Market News

What the latest US inflation data means for ASX 200 investors and interest rates

ASX 200 investors hoping for interest rate cuts in 2024 are keeping one eye on the US Fed.

Read more »

Woman with a coffee mug in one hand and a tablet in another along with pears on the table, symbolising inflation.
Share Market News

Why ASX 200 investors are celebrating today's Aussie inflation print

ASX 200 investors sent the benchmark index sharply higher on Australia’s inflation news.

Read more »

A worried woman looks at her phone and laptop, seeking ways to tighten her belt against inflation.
Economy

NAB boss issues dire prediction for Aussie economy

NAB’s CEO has issued a stark warning on the outlook for Australia’s economic growth.

Read more »