The world’s retail leaders are optimistic about the coming year, with confidence buoyed by positive growth prospects in the Chinese and Indian markets, according to a survey conducted by Monash University.


The survey, conducted by Monash’s Australian Centre for Retail Studies (ACRS), canvassed 219 senior retail executives from around the world for their view on the coming year.


ACRS’ research director, Dr Sean Sands, said the results showed that retail CEOs are cautiously optimistic about growth in their sectors.


“The survey rated China and India as the best growth markets globally, while Western Europe was rated as the worst growth prospect, despite the majority of current sales being from this region,” Dr Sands said.

“Retailers operating in China, the Middle East, Africa and India all expected sales to increase in the year ahead, while Australia, New Zealand, North America and Central and Eastern Europe expected there to be little change.”


Although global retailers were generally cautiously optimistic about local consumer confidence, Australian and New Zealand CEOs reported the lowest level of optimism in the world.


The research comes out after the Commonwealth Bank released its monthly business sales index, which found that economy wide spending has recorded its largest monthly increase in four and a half years according to the latest Business Sales Indicator (BSI) report released by the Commonwealth Bank.