Australia government spending dips in Q3, minor drag on GDP

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View of a construction site for a train station on the Sydney Metro

SYDNEY (Reuters) – Australian government spending dipped 0.6% in the September quarter due to a pullback in investment, an unexpected drag on economic growth in the quarter.

Spending on operational items rose 0.1% in the third quarter from the previous quarter to an inflation-adjusted A$125.33 billion ($84.08 billion), the Australian Bureau of Statistics reported on Tuesday.

Total investment in fixed assets by the government and public enterprises fell 3.4% to A$27.85 billion, after jumping in the second quarter.

In all, the ABS estimated total public demand subtracted 0.2 percentage point from September-quarter gross domestic product (GDP).

($1 = 1.4905 Australian dollars)

(Reporting by Wayne Cole in Sydney; Editing by Matthew Lewis)

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