Trends

Mobile shoppers put on an appy face

Melissa Kent Fashion stores are embracing the 'bricks and clicks' phenomenon, as more Melburnians use their phones to shop.

Lack of professionals ahead

Workplace bands have forced the closure of almost 1000 beds.

Kelly Burke Trends predict Australia will face serious shortages in the health, education and engineering.

Small business sales beat expectations

retail

Sales by small businesses over the all-important Christmas period were better than expected, with mineral-rich WA leading the way.

We're so vain, as thousands of Aussies go under knife

Aussies are spending big on Botox.

New research shows Aussies are expected to spend almost 20 per cent more this year on looking good.

Comments 8

Tills quiet at department stores

While retail figures are on the improve, spending in department stores is on the slide.

Clancy Yeates Spending at department stores slumps to its lowest in two years, as spending on food and cafes jumps.

10 shops with a difference

Deyrolle taxidermy shop in France.

A travel website has compiled a list of the world's weirdest places to part with your cash.

Michael Baker

Catering for retail's golden oldies

Meeting the needs of an ageing population.

Michael Baker Slow check-out lanes, reclining armchairs and lower store shelves: how retailers are tackling the ageing population.

Big rise in business failure rate

Immigration cuts have contributed to the decline in retail sales.

Clancy Yeates The number of corporate insolvencies has surged to its highest level in more than a decade.

Michael Baker

Why salespeople are being pushed aside

Next thing you know, the mannequins will be taking over.

Michael Baker How magic hangers and other technology is changing the role of the traditional sales assistant.

Confidence on the up amid rate cut hopes

RBA.

Clancy Yeates and Eli Greenblat Confidence appears to be recovering from ''recession-like'' lows, with expectations of an interest rate cut.

Michael Baker

Retail's good and bad news

Retail.

Michael Baker Let's not mince words – this has been an unpleasant year for clothing specialty and department stores.

Business surveys at odds

thumbs

Peter Martin Research into whether conditions have hit rock bottom is stunningly inconclusive.

Sales expectations at 19-month low, survey shows

Retail.

Persistent consumer caution has driven second quarter business sales expectations to their lowest level in 19 months, a survey shows.

Sales indicator shows grounds for optimism

Arrows

An indicator of business sales recorded its 13th consecutive monthly fall, but there are glimmers of light amid the gloom.

Business conditions strengthen in Dec qtr

Heading up

Business conditions strengthened in the last three months of 2011, bolstered by improvements in profitability, employment and trading conditions, private survey finds.

Packer snaps up DealsDirect site

Chris Zappone Billionaire James Packer has stepped into the online retailing space through an investment in DealsDirect.

Mad about vintage fashion, food and fun

Captains of Industry shop with Samuel Clements.

Robert Upe Already beloved of hipsters and fashionistas, Melbourne is now making a name for itself as Australia's headquarters of vintage glamour.

TRENDS

Cracking open the coconut water market

Coconut water.

Marcella Bidinost Much like its natural packaging, the Australian market for coconut water is young, green and ripening with potential. But who knows if it will be a tough nut to crack?

Small businesses face outsourcing dilemma

x

Chris Zappone The outsourcing of huge sectors of the Australian workforce has becoming an increasingly difficult problem to tackle as companies look to cut costs and maximise profits.

Analysis

Australian fashion raises the barbell

AFR

Michael Baker In his mid-80s classic hit You Can Call Me Al, Paul Simon sings about a man walking down the street asking himself: “Why am I soft in the middle? The rest of my life is so hard.”