New Zealand retail sales miss the mark

Photo: Julia Vynokurova/ Getty.

New Zealand retail sales volumes rose less-than-expected in the final three months of 2015.

According to Statistics New Zealand, retail volumes rose by 1.2% over the quarter after seasonal adjustments, a figure that was below the downwardly-revised 1.5% pace of Q3 2015 and forecasts for an increase of 1.4%.

From a year earlier volumes increased by 5.3%, down on the 5.7% pace seen in the year to September 2015.

Including price movements, total retail sales rose to NZ$21.8 billion, up 4.4% on a year earlier.

Like Australia, the strength was largely concentrated in housing and tourism related spending.

“For this quarter, the housing and tourism-related industries had notable increases, with the largest in hardware, building, and garden supplies,” said Tehseen Islam, business indicators manager at Statistics New Zealand.

Sales of hardware, building, and garden supplies rose by 5.3% from 12 months earlier, marginally shading a 4.8% lift in accommodation spending of 4.8%.

In overall terms 12 of 15 categories saw sales volumes increase from December 2014.

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