Shift Business Index


January 2023

Shift uses transaction data from a representative sample of business in Australia to gain insights into their financial and operational performance.

Last month: 83
YoY: 92
Last month: 109
YoY: 81
Last month: 119
YoY: 90
Last month: 118
YoY: 100
Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • As businesses navigated the tail end of the holiday period, sales dropped by 21 points, down 19.2% MoM (up 9% YoY) in line with historical trends over January. Liquidity followed suit, falling 7 points, down 8.4% MoM (down 17% YoY).
  • Sales within the Hospitality sector fell 6 points, down 4.5% MoM (up 23.6% YoY) over January. Liquidity within the industry is also down 4 points, down 4.4% MoM (down 27.6% YoY).

Liquidity Index

The Liquidity Index is calculated by measuring changes in business liquidity to garner insights into the overall level of business health.

Liquidity fell 7 points in January, down 17% YoY. This drop was felt across most industries over January, with a notable exception being the Retail Trade sector.

Retail Trade continued to grow its liquidity, up 2 points MoM, following strong sales over December (growing 5% MoM from November).

Within the Transport Sector, liquidity fell by 7 points, down 6.8% MoM (down 6.9% YoY).

Key Measures


The Sales Index tracks changes in sales to measure business performance.

Sales fell by 21 points over January (-19% Mom, + 9% YoY). This was driven by seasonality over the holiday period, reflecting similar performance in January 2022, when sales fell 23 points (-22% YoY).

  • This seasonal sales changes are most evident in the Construction (-30% MoM, +21% YoY) and Manufacturing (-26% MoM, -3% YoY) industries, while within the Hospitality (-4% MoM, +24% YoY) and Retail Trade (-9% MoM, +5% YoY) sectors, Sales declined at a slower pace.
  • Following a strong December Sales performance in the Retail Trade sector, sales dropped 9 points in January 2023, to a 5% growth YoY.

Key Measures – Business Costs
(Supplier Spend)

Supplier spend tracks business costs and expenditures on goods and services, material and equipment, utilities, fuel and insurance.

Supplier spend fell 22 points, (down 18% MoM) over January, however maintained its 8% growth YoY. The Hospitality Industry saw the least change in supplier spend from December, falling only 4 points (up 7% YoY) over January.

Key Measures - Business Costs
(Wage Spend)

Wage spend tracks business spend on wages and salary payments.

Wage spend fell by 3 points in January, up 15% YoY. Hospitality saw an increase in wage costs over the holiday period, up 2 points in January for a YoY growth of 10%.

About the data

Shift Business Index

The Business Index is baselined to February 2021, using six months of average transactions as the denominator.

The Index is calculated by taking a representative sample of businesses from around Australia varied by size, industry and location and looking at their credit transactions across all account types (e.g. transaction, savings and credit card).