Food fuels quarter’s spending

trolley, supermarket, groceryRetail spending rose again in the September quarter, with the increase led by retailers in the food and related industries, reported Statistics New Zealand.

The volume of total retail trade sales rose by 1.5 per cent in the quarter, following a 1.1 per cent rise in the June quarter.

A quarterly rise of more than 1.5 per cent has not been reported since the June 2012 quarter, when it was 1.9 per cent.

There was an increase in sales volume of 1.9 per cent for supermarket and grocery stores, with an increase of three per cent in food and beverage services.

Neil Kelly, Statistics NZ business indicators manager, said that the two food-related industries had the largest rises in both sales volume and value.

In the September quarter, higher sales volumes were reported in 12 of the 15 industries compared with the previous quarter.

Other industries to experience a rise in volume of sales were furniture, floor coverings, housewares, and textile goods retailing with an increase of 6.3 per cent, fuel retailing with an increase of 2.5 per cent, and motor vehicles and parts retailing with an increase of 1.4 per cent.

Falls in sales volumes were reported in accommodation (down 5.4 per cent), clothing, footwear, and accessory retailing (down 1.9 per cent), and non-store and commission-based retailing (down 1.1 per cent).

Core retailing volume of sales, which excludes vehicle-related industries, had a rise of 1.4 per cent in the quarter.

There was a rise of 0.9 per cent ($174 million) in the total value of retail sales, with an increase in nine of 15 retail industries.

Industries that had an increase in the value of retail sales were the food and beverage services industry, with an increase of 3.1 per cent ($63 million), furniture, floor coverings, housewares, and textile goods retailing with an increase of 4.7 per cent ($24 million), fuel retailing with an increase of 2.3 per cent ($45 million), and supermarket and grocery stores with an increase of 1.1 per cent ($46 million).

Decreases in the value of sales were seen in accommodation and clothing, footwear, and accessory retailing.

Core retailing sales value rose 0.8 per cent ($120 million).

Overall, the value of total retail sales was $18.3 billion in the September 2014 quarter, an increase of 4.1 per cent compared with the same period in 2013.

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