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Retail Sales Growth Continues

Retail Sales Growth Continues

Seasonally adjusted total retail sales increased 0.7 percent in August 2002 compared with July 2002, according to Statistics New Zealand. This follows increases of 0.6 percent in July 2002 and 0.5 percent in June 2002. Seasonally adjusted retail sales for the core retailing group (which excludes the motor vehicle retailing and motor vehicle services storetypes) increased 1.3 percent in August 2002, compared with July 2002.

This follows a 1.1 percent increase in July 2002.

Eleven out of the 15 storetypes recorded increases in seasonally adjusted sales in August 2002 compared with July 2002. The largest increases occurred in the appliance retailing and recreational goods storetypes. These increases were partly offset by decreases in four storetypes, including motor vehicle retailing and motor vehicle services. This is the second consecutive month that both motor vehicle storetypes have recorded a decrease in seasonally adjusted sales.

Seasonally adjusted sales for the Auckland and Wellington regions were higher in August 2002 compared with July 2002. The Remainder of the South Island (which includes all areas outside Canterbury) recorded no change. The remaining three regions recorded lower seasonally adjusted sales this month.

The sales trend remains positive, continuing a pattern of growth seen since the last turning point in May 1998.

Brian Pink Government Statistician

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