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Black Friday Kicks Off Christmas Spend

Black Friday Kicks Off Christmas Spend

Christmas spending started with a rush this year as New Zealand embraced the concept of Black Friday sales.

Spending through Paymark totalled $5,180 million in November. This amounts to a 0.9% seasonally adjusted rise on October. Relative to November last year, underlying spending growth was 6.2%, higher than averaged over the previous four months.

Within the Core Retail sector, which includes supermarkets, restaurants, accommodation providers and retail shops, the annual growth rate increased to 7.5%. Fastest growth was recorded by Department stores (+20.2%), Food and beverage service merchants (+11.3%), Specialised food merchants (11.0%) and a grouping consisting of housing-related merchants (+8.5%) such as hardware, furniture and appliance stores.

The significant change was the boost on and after Friday 25 November as many merchants conducted Black Friday sales. The national growth rate amongst Core Retail merchants peaking at 14% on Black Friday (and reached 25.2% for the subset of Core merchants that exclude Food/liquor and Hospitality merchants).

While merchants in Auckland/Northland experienced strong Black Friday spending as well, the annual underlying spending growth for New Zealand’s largest region remained below the national average throughout November.

Across all sectors, the annual underlying growth rate for Auckland/Northland during November was 3.3%, well below the national average. Wellington (7.8%) and Canterbury (+6.4%) also ranked low.

Amongst the regions with highest annual spending growth was Marlborough (17.5%), representing a bounce back from the Earthquake-affected figures of November 2016.


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