New Zealand retail sales moderated at the start of 2016

Photo: Tim Boyle/Getty Images.

New Zealand retail sales growth moderated in the first three months of the year.

According to Statistics New Zealand, retail sales volumes rose by 0.8% during the quarter following seasonal adjustments, missing expectations for an increase of 1.0%.

It followed a 1.1% expansion in the prior quarter, and was the weakest increase seen since the June quarter of 2015.

Core retail sales volumes, excluding auto sales, rose by 1.0% after gaining 1.3% in Q4 2015.

Statistics New Zealand note that 11 of the 15 retail industries had higher sales volumes during the quarter, led by electrical and electronic goods retailing with a gain of 3.8%.

By dollar value, retail sales rose by NZ$125 million, or 0.6%, for the quarter after seasonal adjustments, near half the 1.1% pace seen in the final three months of 2015.

In actual terms, the value of retail sales was NZ$20.2 billion, up 4.7% on the same quarter a year earlier.

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