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Quarterly Retail Sales Growth Continues

Quarterly Retail Sales Growth Continues

Seasonally adjusted total retail sales increased 1.1 percent in the September 2002 quarter compared with the June 2002 quarter, according to Statistics New Zealand. This was the result of monthly increases of 0.5 percent in July 2002 and 0.6 percent August 2002, offset by a 0.1 percent decrease in the September 2002 month.

The growth this quarter was widespread, with 11 out of the 15 storetypes recording higher seasonally adjusted sales, compared with the June 2002 quarter. The largest contributors to the increase in seasonally adjusted sales were the food retailing; and cafes, restaurants and takeaways storetypes. The largest decrease was recorded by the motor vehicle services storetype, which fell by 2.1 percent.

The volume of total seasonally adjusted retail sales increased 1.1 percent in the September 2002 quarter, compared with the June 2002 quarter. This quarter's growth in sales volumes matches last quarter's 1.1 percent increase and is the seventh consecutive quarterly increase in sales volumes.

Regional growth remains strong, with all regions, apart from the Waikato, recording higher seasonally adjusted sales this quarter, compared with June 2002. Seasonally adjusted sales fell by 1.0 percent in the Waikato. This is the first decrease in the Waikato region since a 0.8 percent fall in March 2000.

Brian Pink

Government Statistician

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