Retail card spending exceeds $6 billion for the first time

Electronic Card Transactions: December 2015  –  Media Release

Retail spending using electronic cards reached $6.0 billion in December 2015, up $304 million (5.3 percent) from December 2014, Statistics New Zealand said today. This is the highest-ever monthly figure.

However, when adjusted for seasonal effects, retail spending was down 0.2 percent in December 2015, following a 0.2 percent rise in November 2015.

“While card spending was up in five of the six retail industries in December, a significant fall in the durables industry has lowered overall card spending in the retail sector,” business indicators manager Clara Eatherley said.

The largest retail movements in December 2015 were:

  • durables, down $21 million (1.8 percent) 
  • hospitality, up $13 million (1.6 percent).

Core retail spending (which excludes the vehicle-related industries) fell 0.4 percent in December 2015, following a 0.3 percent rise in November.

The total value of electronic card spending, including the two non-retail industries (services and other non-retail), was up 0.1 percent in December 2015. This follows a 0.2 percent rise in total spending in November.

Trends for the total, retail, and core retail series have generally been rising since these series began in October 2002, but appear to be easing in recent months.

Values are only available at the national level, and are not adjusted for price changes.


For media enquiries contact: Clara Eatherley, Christchurch 03 964 8700, [email protected]
Authorised by Liz MacPherson, Government Statistician, 14 January 2016


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