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Small Change for Retail Sales in May

Small Change for Retail Sales in May

Seasonally adjusted total retail sales increased 0.1 percent in May 2004 compared with April 2004, according to Statistics New Zealand. This follows a decrease of 0.8 percent in April 2004 and an increase of 2.4 percent in March 2004. Excluding the motor vehicle-related industries, seasonally adjusted sales were 0.2 percent higher in May 2004 than in the previous month.

Eight of the 24 retail industries recorded increases in seasonally adjusted sales for the month. The largest dollar value increases occurred in supermarket and grocery stores (up $18 million) and motor vehicle retailing (up $13 million). The largest decreases were in automotive repair and services not elsewhere classified (down $11 million) and department stores (down $9 million).

Sales for two industries, other food retailing and accommodation, were relatively unchanged this month. The retail sales trend increased 0.5 percent for the total North Island and 0.6 percent for the total South Island in May 2004 compared with April 2004.

Total actual retail sales for May 2004 were $4,404 million, which is 5.2 percent higher than in May 2003.

Brian Pink

Government Statistician

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