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Strong quarter for retailers
Embargoed until 10:45am  –  15 February 2013

Retail Trade Survey: December 2012 quarter  –  Media Release

In December 2012, retail sales volumes had their strongest quarterly increase in six years, Statistics New Zealand said today.

After adjusting for seasonal effects, the volume of total retail sales rose 2.1 percent compared with the September 2012 quarter. The last time sales volumes rose as strongly was in the December 2006 quarter.

“Twelve of the 15 retail industries had higher sales volumes in the latest quarter,” business statistics manager Blair Cardno said.

The industries that led this quarter’s increase were:

  • fuel retailing
  • hardware, building, and garden supplies retailing
  • motor vehicle and parts retailing.

“This is the second large increase in a row for the hardware, building, and garden supplies industry, which was again boosted by stronger-than-usual sales in Canterbury,” Mr Cardno said. 

When price effects are included, the value of total retail sales rose 1.7 percent.

South Island sales values were up 1.9 percent in the December 2012 quarter, while sales values in the North Island rose 1.3 percent.

When we look at the longer-term picture, the trends for total sales volume and total sales value have been generally rising since low-points in 2009. 

Ends

For media enquiries contact: 
Blair Cardno 
Christchurch 03 964 8700
Email: info@stats.govt.nz

Authorised by:

Geoff Bascand
Government Statistician

Published 15 February 2013 
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