Retail NZ has reported strong retail performance for the first quarter of 2018. Spend across the sector was up 3.4 percent on the year before; despite 45 percent of all transactions in 2017 being from off-shore merchants.
Up 3.4 percent from the year before, the retail sector gained $23.1 billion. Stats NZ Retail Trade Survey shows that retail sales value has been on a steady climb since March 2016.
The region that saw the most growth percentage was the Tasman region, with 5.8 percent ($232 million) up on last year. North Island spending was up 2.7 percent, while South Island spending was up 2.6 percent.
Auckland saw a 2.9 percent increase ($8.3 billion), Wellington saw a 0.1 percent decrease ($2.2 billion).
Most categories had seen growth, with the strongest seen throughout the liquor and electric and electronic goods sector.
Retail NZ reports numbers Marketview and BNZ that show Kiwi love of online shopping. Total online spending on physical goods is sitting at $4.2 billion, equivalent to 7.6 percent of total retail sales.
Off-shore merchants accounted for 32 percent of online spending, and 45 percent of transactions 2017.
The report says although there continues to be a large portion of retailers not meeting targets, they continue to expect a positive outlook for the next quarter with 75 percent expecting to meet targets.
Retail NZ, who are strong supporters of closing the de minimis loop hole, say “we hope that the government’s decision to requiring offshore retailers to collect tax from 2019 will level the playing field for these retailers.”
Sprits among the retail sector remain high, with predictions calling for more growth in the next quarter.