The latest National Business Expectations Survey from Dun and Bradstreet suggests the Reserve Bank’s interest rate rises are helping to contain price inflation.
The survey of 1,200 business owners and senior executives shows many are expecting slower growth in selling prices, sales, employment and inventories during the September quarter compared to the June quarter.
The research from Dun and Bradstreet also shows one-third of those surveyed named interest rates as the primary influence on their business.
Dun and Bradstreet chief executive Christine Christian says if prices do fall or at least remain steady, that would reduce the need for more interest rate increases.
“The decline in selling price expectations is a sign there may be some easing of inflationary pressures as firms respond to the impact of rising interest rates,” she said.
“Given that the RBA has listed rising selling prices as a key trigger for interest rate rises, this may reduce the need for further immediate action.”
Ms Christian says businesses have been extremely resilient during the economic recovery, but there may be some challenges in the months ahead.
She says many sections of the business community are still struggling to get finance.
“The overall outlook for Australian executives remains positive and was substantially better than at the same point in time in 2009,” she said.
“I think with the backdrop – particularly in the US and the UK – the question now is how long will this positive outlook continue.
“Despite some of the statements that have been coming out of both Government and the banking sector … there is still some concern by businesses that their future growth is being hampered by these very tight credit policies.
“In fact, 21 per cent of firms had less access to credit in the last quarter.”