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Christmas rush proves pundits wrong

Wednesday 14 December 2005

Newmarket says Christmas rush proves pundits wrong

Ten full days till Christmas and New Zealand's premier shopping district, Newmarket, has today declared that the much anticipated Christmas rush has finally arrived with gusto.

"Reserve Bank Governor Alan Bollard is trying hard to cool the economy and curb people's spending, but we can positively report that Christmas shoppers are now out on Broadway en mass spending at levels comparable to previous years," said Cameron Brewer, head of the Newmarket Business Association.

"For the first two weeks of December it felt like we were off to a reasonably slow start but this week we've reached the tipping point with Newmarket now pulsing with eager Christmas shoppers.

"Retailers tell me that as from today it now feels like the real Christmas rush is upon us with the streets now bustling.

"I understand Two Double shopping centre and Smith and Caughey's department store are doing well, as are our many giftware and fashion stores. It seems all the talk from the doom and gloom merchants has yet to have any effect on the behavior of the reasonably discerning Auckland shopper.

"The impact of falling business confidence and Mr Bollard's interest rate hikes have seemingly yet to be felt. Newmarket's understandably pleased about that."

Mr Brewer said not all is roses. The local business association has one challenge it is keen to confront - the perception that Newmarket has a parking shortage.

"We have 13 car-parking buildings in Newmarket with four of them offering free parking for two hours with proof of purchase over $5 from their associated stores."

ENDS

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