Card spending steady
Retail card spending rose in the motor-vehicle industry in February 2019, up $4.6 million or 2.6 per cent on January 2019.
Overall growth in electronic card spending was modest in February 2019 after fluctuating in recent months, according to Stats NZ's latest figures.
When adjusted for seasonal effects, total retail card spending was up 0.9 per cent in February. This follows a 1.8 per cent rise in January.
Retail card spending statistics covers all debit, credit, and charge card transactions with New Zealand-based merchants. It can be used to indicate changes in consumer spending and economic activity.
Spending rose across five of the six retail industries when compared to January 2019. The largest movements were in the consumables industry, up $19m or 1.0 per cent, the fuel industry up $7.4m or 1.3 per cent and the hospitality industry, up $7.0m or 0.7 per cent.
“The rise in fuel spending coincided with a gradual increase in fuel prices, after a period of lower fuel prices,” retail manager Sue Chapman said.
“Sales of durables such as furniture, hardware, and appliances, as well as clothes and shoes, appear to have levelled out in February, after a more volatile patch in December and January.”