Shift Business Index


March 2023

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

Last month: 67
YoY: 82
Last month: 94
YoY: 101
Last month: 100
YoY: 103
Last month: 117
YoY: 104
Table of Contents

Key Takeaways

  • Sales growth continued over March, rising 13 points. This growth was most prominent in the Construction and Transport industries, which both increased sales by 20 points.   
  • Following three months of decline, sales within the Hospitality sector rose by 9 points (+9% MoM, + 7% YoY) over March.  In contrast, Liquidity continued to fall, down 5 points (-9% MoM, -39% YoY).  
  • In the Manufacturing industry, sales increased by 12 points over March (+14% MoM, -10% YoY). Liquidity within the sector fell by 6 points (-9% MoM, -31% YoY). 

Liquidity Index

The Liquidity Index is calculated by measuring changes in business liquidity to garner insights into the overall level of business health. The Business Liquidity Index is down by 3 points in March (-4.48% MoM, 22% YoY).
  • Liquidity in the Transport sector grew by 3 points over March (+3% MoM, +1% YoY). Sales performance within the industry has been strong over 2023, however costs are still high, with supplier spend for Transport businesses rising 14 points this month.
  • In the Retail Trade sector, liquidity fell by 6 points (-8% MoM, -22% YoY), with Supplier spend rising by 9 points (+10% MoM, -8% YoY).

Key Measures


The Sales Index tracks changes in sales to measure business performance. The Sales Index rose by 6 points in March, up (+14.2% MoM, + 5.3% YoY).
  • Construction sales grew 20 points over March (+19% MoM, + 34% YoY), with Transport sales increasing by 20 points (+16% MoM, +27% YoY). 
  • Sales within the Retail Trade industry grew by 8 points this month (+9% MoM, -8% 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 grew 10 points over March (+ 9.7% MoM, + 6.5% YoY). The Transport sector continues to experience the largest increase in supplier costs, rising 14 points over March (+14% MoM, +2% YoY).

In the Hospitality sector, spend rose 11 points (+12% MoM, +4% YoY).

Key Measures - Business Costs
(Wage Spend)

Wage spend tracks business spend on wages and salary payments.  Wage spend grew 4 points over March (+3.4% MoM, + 16.4% YoY).

On an industry level, the Construction industry had the highest wage spend increase over March, up 6 points (+5.6% MoM, + 4.7% YoY). 

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).