RTTNews - Consumer sentiment in Australia deteriorated by 4.3 percent in May from April, according to survey results released Wednesday by Westpac Bank and the Melbourne Institute.

The group's May Consumer Sentiment Index declined 3.9 points to a seasonally adjusted 88.8 compared to April's reading of 92.7.

The family finances component was down 7.0 percent from one year earlier and the family finance reading looking one year forward was down 7.3 percent.

Westpac Chief Economist Bill Evans said the release of the federal budget just prior to the survey was a key factor in the decline. Evans said the May result was the second largest fall following a federal budget release in a decade, trailing only the 6.4 percent decline seen in May 2006.

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