Australian Chamber of Commerce calls for further rate relief

THE peak body for Australian business and industry has called for more interest rate cuts, despite the nation's cash rate already at historically low levels.

Releasing its latest survey of investor confidence, Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief economist Greg Evans said businesses needed further rate relief.

Mr Evans cited further deterioration of business confidence during December, with some indicators falling to 15-year lows.

This was, he said, despite marginal improvements in actual business confidence during the last quarter of 2012.

"It is worrying that despite recent rate cuts by the Reserve Bank, manufacturing and construction industries continue to report weak performance and declining business sentiment," he said.

He cited taxes and government regulations as key impediments to business expansion.