New South Wales continues to be the Australian state with the best-performing local economy, a new report reveals.
The latest quarterly State of the States report from CommSec shows that the top three state economies down under have remained unchanged over the past three months, with Victoria sitting just behind New South Wales in second place, followed by the Australian Capital Territory in third.
In fourth place was Southern Australia (SA), which had jumped two places in the rankings, reaching its highest position since 2011.
Craig James, chief economist at CommSec, explained: "SA's lift in [the] rankings is driven by improvement in the job market serving to boost retail spending and new home starts.
"Those economies benefiting from favourable population growth are performing best, reflected in stronger home building and retail activity."
SA was a strong performer in several categories, ranking third overall in terms of its business investment in the last quarter, despite coming in at 2.7 per cent below the average level of the last ten years.
The state also came fifth in terms of retail spending and construction work, and sixth for economic growth, placing it in a relatively strong position overall.
Meanwhile, Tasmania was named as the area with the fifth-strongest-performing economy down under, having dropped one place over the last three months. Queensland came in sixth, having fallen two places.
Seventh place on the list was occupied by the Northern Territory, while Western Australia came in eighth - both of these rankings were unchanged from the previous quarter.
Population growth is classed as a key indicator of economic prosperity, with the average rate of growth over the past few months coming in at 1.6 per cent. However, this was higher in Victoria (2.4 per cent) and the Australian Capital Territory (1.8 per cent).