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Growth data afterglow proves short lived

AAP logoAAP 19/09/2016 Colin Brinsden, AAP Economics Correspondent

As Malcolm Turnbull continues to talk up the nation's latest economic growth figures as the "envy of the world", Australians appear to have moved on and found less pleasing things to worry about.

The prime minister and US Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, in a phone hook-up, talked about global economic growth and concerns about the rise of protectionism in different markets.

"Of course there is great admiration for the strong growth in the Australian economy ... at 3.3 per cent in the last year," Mr Turnbull told reporters on the floor on the New York Stock Exchange.

It was up from two per cent a year ago, and along with continued strong growth in jobs, the economy has successfully transitioned from the end of the mining investment boom.

"Because of the resilience of our economy and the entrepreneurship and the enterprise of millions of Australians, we've managed to maintain our strong economic growth," he said.

In an immediate response to those economic growth figures released earlier in September showing the fastest annual pace in three years and the completion of 25 years without a recession, consumer confidence surged 3.3 per cent.

However, the latest weekly ANZ-Roy Morgan consumer confidence index released on Tuesday reversed a lot of the gain, dropping 2.2 per cent, and apparently ignoring the unexpected small step down in the jobless rate to 5.6 per cent from 5.7 per cent.

"Last week's sell-off in financial markets - which saw the ASX index suffer heavy losses early in the week - was likely the main driver of the decline in confidence," ANZ head of Australian economics Felicity Emmett said.

Investors are unlikely to have been impressed by the technical glitch on the Australian stock exchange on Monday which resulted in a shortened trading session and the loss of billions of dollars of business.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission is investigating what happened and will report back to Treasurer Scott Morrison.

"This was a very unfortunate incident yesterday but it's been five years since something like that has happened with the ASX," Mr Morrison told Sydney radio 2GB.

"Regardless of that, these things need to be avoided and we need to determine what caused it."

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