Flat retail offset by increased fuel spending

Petrol_pump_mp3h0355Retail sales value increased by just 0.6 per cent over the September quarter, totalling $153 million, according to Stats NZ.

However, the data showed a notable 7 per cent increase in fuel spending to $150 million due to the start of the Auckland regional fuel tax and record pump prices coinciding, retail statistics manager Sue Chapman said.

Nine of the 15 retail industries analysed saw higher sales value over the period, which was offset by a fall in the food and beverage and vehicle industries over the quarter by 2.4 and 1.7 per cent respectively.

The volume of retail sales, however, fell flat over the September quarter, staying relatively unchanged from the June quarter which saw a 1.1 per cent rise.

Department stores brought in $109.97 million over the period, and saw the largest increase of 7.4 per cent due to structural and reporting changes in the Warehouse Group becoming effective during the quarter.

“This didn’t affect either the total retail sales, or the core retail series, as activity was consolidated into one retail industry,” Chapman said.

“Some sales now recorded in department stores had previously been recorded in the ‘pharmaceutical and other stores’ industry.”

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