Electronic card spending dips in March

Electronic card spending dipped in March as New Zealanders spent less on items like appliances, electronics and hardware, though spending was up slightly on the same period last year.

In retail, card spending saw a 0.3 per cent decline in March, seasonally adjusted, after a 0.6 per cent rise in February and 0.2 per cent increase in January, according to data from Statistics NZ. Spending in the core retail industries fell 0.2 per cent.

The fall from February has been largely attributed to the decrease in durables purchases, which fell 1.9 per cent or $26 million. Spending on apparel saw a 2.9 per cent decline to $9 million.

Spending on consumables saw a 0.5 per cent increase to $11 million, while spending on fuel saw a 0.7 per cent rise to $4.2 million.

In actual terms, total retail spending using debit and credit cards was $5.6 billion in March, compared to $5.1 billion in February.

Spending was 0.7 per cent higher year on year. Core retail spending rose $4.8 billion, compared to $4.4 billion from the month before. Core retail spending was up 2 per cent year on year.

Credit card transactions continued to make up more than half of the total at 54 per cent in March but were down a bit from February when they made up 54.5 per cent of the total.

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