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Audience trends

Average annual expenditure per household on selected items, ranked by 1998/99 spending, 1988/89, 1993/94, 1998/99 and 2003/04

Many cultural expenditures are more related to the household than to the individual; for example, the number of televisions a household buys does not necessarily increase with the size of the household. This measure is an indicator of changing spending patterns at the household level (although some allowance must be made for inflation; between 1998/99 and 2003/04 the CPI increased by 18 per cent).

Spending increased by more than the inflation rate in most categories. The exceptions are cinema admissions, which increased by 16 per cent (slightly less than the CPI), hire of video tapes, which fell by 3 per cent and expenditure on CDs, records and tapes, which fell by 20 per cent. These drops reflect a strong move towards newer technologies since the last survey. Households are now spending more on subscription TV fees than on hire or buying of video tapes/cassettes.

Annual expenditure ($) per household % change 98/99 to 03/041
1988/89 1993/94 1998/99 2003/04
Home computer equipment, software and TV games, total2 96 205 263 380 44%
Home computer equipment (including pre-packaged software) n.a. n.a. n.a. 310
TV games and computer software n.a. n.a. n.a. 70
Television (equipment, hire, etc), total3 119 152 177 253 43%
Television (equipment hire etc) excluding home entertainment systems n.a. n.a. n.a. 185
Home entertainment systems n.a. n.a. n.a. 69
Video cassette recorders, etc total 60 69 104 160 54%
Video cassette recorders n.a. n.a. n.a. 19
Video cameras n.a. n.a. n.a. 48
Set-top boxes n.a. n.a. n.a. 10
Digital video disc players/laser disc players and video equipment n.a. n.a. n.a. 83
Subscription TV fees4 n.a. n.a. 37 140 278%
Video cassettes and video discs (blank and pre-recorded), total 20 37 37 119 221%
Cinema fees and charges 100 62 87 101 16%
CDs, records and tapes, total 32 82 108 86 -20%
Pre-recorded compact discs and record (audio) n.a. n.a. n.a. 83
Audio cassettes and tapes n.a. n.a. n.a. 3
Hire of video cassette tapes and TV/computer games 37 74 63 61 -3%
Blank video cassettes and video discs n.a. n.a. n.a. 11
Pre-recorded video cassettes and video discs n.a. n.a. n.a. 108
Online charges5 n.a. n.a. 15 49 227%

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, Household Expenditure Survey, 1988/89, 1993/94, 1998/99 and 2003/04 (unpublished data).

n.a. data not available
1. Between 1993/94 and 1998/99 the CPI increased by 18 per cent.
2. Due to classification changes the TV games category has been combined with home computer equipment and software from 1998/99.
3. Includes TV aerials.
4. Included as a separate category for the first time in 1998/99.
5. Included as a separate category for the first time in 1998/99; includes internet service provider charges.