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Retail electronic card spending up but trend flat

19 June 2008

Retail electronic card spending up but trend flat

After adjusting for seasonal effects, the retail Electronic Card Transaction (ECT) series increased 1.2 percent in May 2008 compared with April 2008, Statistics New Zealand said today.

The main contributors to this increase were the vehicle-related and consumables industries. There were also significant increases in May in the value of retail ECT transactions for the durables and hospitality industries, on a seasonally adjusted basis.

The trend for the retail ECT series was 6.0 percent higher in May 2008 compared to May 2007. This annual increase was the smallest since the series began in October 2002. The apparel, durables and services industries have contributed noticeably to an easing of the trend in recent months. Easter generally falls in April but occasionally occurs in March, as it did this year. The timing of Easter may have contributed to the movements in the ECT series in March, April and May. In May 2008, there were 86 million electronic transactions in the total ECT series totalling $4.7 billion.

The Electronic Card Transaction series measures the number and value of debit, credit and charge card transactions with New Zealand-based merchants. It is a census of all card transactions processed within New Zealand. Transactions by overseas card-holders in New Zealand are included; transactions by New Zealand card-holders overseas are excluded.

The data is released as an experimental series and Statistics NZ acknowledges the cooperation of the private sector in providing the data for publication.

Dallas Welch (Mrs)

Acting Government Statistician 19 June 2008


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