CommSec’s quarterly State of the States report has revealed Tasmania nabbed top spot once again following a strong job market and an abundance of new dwelling builds. 

This is the 11th time in three years Tasmania has been crowned number one.

CommSec’s methodology measures eight economic indicators including economic growth, retail spending, unemployment, and housing finance compared with a region’s decade average.

After claiming top performing economy for the first time in 13 years, Queensland slipped back to second place, in draw with South Australia. 

However, the report noted there is little to separate the top three economies with the leaderboard unlikely to change within the next six months.

Tasmania ranked first on three indicators: equipment investment, dwelling starts, and relative unemployment.

In lieu of dwelling starts, however, Hobart has led the Australian capitals in terms of dwelling price declines, down 12.7% on the year and continuing a decline even as other capitals' values have risen.

Trend unemployment in Tasmania was 3.8% in March, which is 37.7% below the decade average. 

CommSec Chief Economist Craig James said Tasmania continues to outperform the rest of the nation.

“Australia’s states and territory are all close on the performance indicators,” Mr James said.

“Looking ahead, sectors like construction, education and consumer spending are likely to be supported by high rates of in-bound migration.

“We anticipate ongoing growth in Tasmania, Queensland, and South Australia economies and that these states will remain at the top of the leaderboard.”

Western Australia continues to lead on economic growth - economic activity in the state for the year to December 2022 was 41.4% above its ‘normal’ output.

Victoria came out on top in terms of retail spending, up 16.2% in the December quarter from its decade-average levels.

Queensland led on population growth, while South Australia led on completed construction work.

Best-performing state economies

CommBank’s rankings are now as follows:

1. Tasmania 

=2. Queensland and South Australia

4. New South Wales

=5. Western Australia and Victoria

7. ACT

8. Northern Territory


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