Bricks and mortar have cemented NSW as the country's strongest economy.
The most populated state pushed Western Australia off the pedestal late last year, and is now the top performer for a third consecutive quarter, CommSec’s State of the States report shows.
NSW also has the title to itself, after previously sharing it with the Northern Territory. Its strength is supported by housing construction, as population growth spurs demand for new homes.
“NSW looks set to be well supported by home construction and infrastructure spending over 2015,” CommSec said.
“NSW has improved its position on housing finance and dwelling starts to consolidate its position at the top of the economic performance rankings.”
Western Australia is the third ranked state, after holding the crown for four years, as iron ore prices plummet and the mining investment boom fades. CommSec forecasts more balanced growth ahead for WA, as engineering construction activity is scaled back.
Just behind WA is Victoria, Australia’s best performing state for housing finance.
Queensland leads the nation when it comes to overall construction, but lags on employment, with the fastest growing joblessness behind WA.
South Australia ranks last for new home building, while Tasmania remains at the bottom of the economic league table.
STATE VERSUS STATE
- NSW – strong on home building, retail trade and population growth
- NT – strong on economic growth, weak on housing finance
- WA – strong on economic growth and construction, weak on unemployment
- VIC – strong on housing finance, weak on economic growth
- QLD – strong on overall construction, weak on unemployment
- ACT – improved housing finance; weak on construction and dwelling starts
- SA – improved retail sales and construction, weak on home building
- TAS – improved dwelling starts; weak on retail spending