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Retailers are boosting staff numbers in anticipation of an improvement in consumer spending, according to the Australian Retailers Association.                 retail

The industry group’s executive director, Richard Evans, said surveys of association members showed a 12 per cent jump in employment for small and medium-sized retailers this month, painting a much more positive picture than figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics earlier this month.

The number of people employed in the retail sector fell by less than 0.1 per cent last month compared with February, on a seasonally adjusted basis, but the ABS also reported an increase in underutilisation—the proportion of the workforce that is either unemployed or not working as many hours as it would like.

The rate of underutilisation among female workers was 9.1per cent last month, compared with 6.4 per cent for men, which the ABS attributed to the larger proportion of women working in industries with high levels of casual employment, such as retail.

However, Mr Evans said most retailers were holding on to skilled staff in preparation for rising demand, with 68 per cent reporting no change in employment levels in the past quarter.

“A further 16 per cent of retailers actually increased their number of staff during the same period,” he said.

“Retailing works in cycles, and although the sector has experienced a downturn, good retailers are doing their best to hold on to skilled staff as consumer confidence continues to grow and a new type of consumer emerges.”

The same trend was in play among the bigger retailers, with David Jones boosting staffing levels around the Mother’s Day shopping period after the delivery of the federal government’s fiscal stimulus package in April led to a sharp rebound in sales.

Mr Evans said the stimulus package and lower interest rates meant most consumers had more cash available to spend, but “negative and fear-filled commentary” had fuelled a tendency among consumers to cut discretionary spending in favour of saving or paying off debt.

This meant shoppers would be in a better position to spend when confidence picks up again—with the ARA forecasting an improvement as soon as the September quarter.

Source  :  www.careerone.com.au

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When choosing your land and house package think carefully on how you live before choosing the right house for you.        House%20-%20Paddington%20finished%201%20interior 

Make sure the floor plan fits the way you live.

Design your house for you and your life style, you’d be surprised at how many houses don’t fit the way people really live.

I remember when people actually used their living rooms and wouldn’t have dreamed of sitting in the kitchen, much less thinking of it as the centre of the house now 

But that’s exactly what’s happened over the last three decades.  Other changes have occurred too: home offices have become increasingly important, as have master bedrooms, en suites, activity rooms, alfresco’s and pools.

 Any well-designed house must be functional ,  people define their space needs as ‘informal and formal’ or ‘public and private’ rather than thinking of their plan as a series of rooms.

 So think about the way you really live, design your floor plan accordingly, and you’ll be taking the next step towards a well-designed house.

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FREMANTLE will host the biggest cruise liner ever to visit WA when the Queen Mary 2 squeezes into the harbour next year.liner in freo

The 152,000-tonne ship, the largest of any type to sail into WA, will be visiting on March 14, 2010.

Built in 2003, the 3000-passenger liner has 10 restaurants, five pools, 8000-book library, casino, nightclub and even a planetarium.

On offer is a 30-night fly-cruise-and-stay deal that includes a 29-night cruise visiting China, Japan, New Zealand, Sydney and Adelaide.

Cruise Express is offering the package, which includes meals, for $8795 per person, twin-share.

www.inmycommunity.com.au

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