Sharechat Logo

Retail card spending growth slows in February

Friday 9th March 2018

Text too small?

New Zealand retail spending on electronic cards gained slightly in February, but was subdued in most retail industries with spending on groceries and liquor falling.

Seasonally adjusted total retail spending on credit and debit cards increased 0.1 percent in February from January, Statistics New Zealand. Core retail spending, excluding fuel and vehicles, fell 0.3 percent.

Spending dropped in two of the six retail industries, was unchanged in two, and rose in two. Consumables spending, which covers grocery and liquor retailing, dropped 0.5 percent in the month. Stats NZ retail manager Sue Chapman said this was the first decrease in the category since May 2017 and "could be the effect of people hunkering down during the two ex-tropical cyclones that hit this month."

"While spending was on the soft side of expectations, this followed a large 1.4 percent gain last month, and still leaves us with a fairly healthy picture of spending growth over the past year," said Westpac Banking Corp senior economist Satish Ranchhod. The market and Westpac had expected a modest gain in retail spending, he said. 

"With mortgage rates continuing to edge down in recent weeks and renewed strength in the housing market, we expect to see household spending remaining firm over the next few months," Ranchhod said. "However, this strength is expected to ease back somewhat later in the year. In part, this is because the new Government's policies will cool housing demand and in turn will dampen growth in consumer spending. We also expect to see mortgage rates rising modestly towards the close of 2018."

Spending on durables and hospitality was unchanged in February, while apparel spending rose 0.3 percent. Spending on vehicles excluding fuel rose 2.3 percent, while fuel spending dropped 0.3 percent. 

Today's figures show actual total retail spending climbed 3.3 percent to $4.9 billion in February from the same month a year earlier.

Card-holders across all industries made 134 million transactions in the month, down from 141 million in January but ahead of the 128 million transactions recorded in February last year. The average value of $50 was unchanged from January and from the previous February.


  General Finance Advertising    

Comments from our readers

No comments yet

Add your comment:
Your name:
Your email:
Not displayed to the public
Comments to Sharechat go through an approval process. Comments which are defamatory, abusive or in some way deemed inappropriate will not be approved. It is allowable to use some form of non-de-plume for your name, however we recommend real email addresses are used. Comments from free email addresses such as Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc may not be approved.

Related News:

MARKET CLOSE: NZ shares drop 1% on global selloff, led by Synlait, Sky TV; CBL meeting delayed
Global appetite for NZ yield stocks on 'pause', Harbour Asset's Bascand says
Green Acres models 24/7 on-demand cleaning service on Uber
Ponzi scheme operator Hibbs sentenced to 8 years jail over $17.5M fraud
NZ dollar ekes out small weekly gain as investors fret about possible trade war
CBL watershed meeting deadline extended, Goldman Sachs hired as adviser
Tait Communications wins contract to upgrade London bus fleet
Still a healthy diagnosis
Auckland Airport sees 92% surge in Chinese tourists in February as annual figures hold strong
Allied Farmers to net $441,137 for receivable as PVL liquidator drops suit against directors

IRG See IRG research reports