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    Default Record sales figures

    They're still managing to shop, shop, shop.

    Stores report record sales figures
    11:40AM Monday May 14, 2007

    Retail sales rose a seasonally and inflation-adjusted 3.8 per cent, or $539 million, in the March quarter, the largest increase since the series of figures started in 1995 and well above expectations.

    Statistics New Zealand (SNZ) figures published today show the industries making the largest contribution to the increase were motor vehicle retailing, up 6.3 per cent ($153 million), and appliance retailing, which rose 9.1 per cent ($107 million).

    The March quarter increase was well above the median prediction in a Reuters poll of economists where the figure was 1.8 per cent. It followed rises of 2.1 per cent in the December quarter and 1.1 per cent in the three months to last September.

    The three months covered by the latest data includes three weeks after the Reserve Bank increased official interest rates by 0.25 of a percentage point, but not a second hike late last month.

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    Mother Bear

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    No wonder they can't afford to buy houses any more, they're all out buying appliances.

    March madness hits appliance buyers
    5:00AM Tuesday May 15, 2007
    By Christine Nikiel

    Noel Leeming Group chief executive Andrew Dutkiewicz says the company is selling flat-screen TVs, video games and computers like never before.

    Consumers spent up a storm in the March quarter, especially on appliances, according to yesterday's Statistics New Zealand data.

    Spending in the month of March was particularly strong.

    Dutkiewicz said strong demand for laptops, the release of Microsoft's latest operating system Vista, and cheaper flat-panel televisions drove the sales.

    "We're pleased with our performance for the March quarter. It was better than the December quarter," he said.

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    Mother Bear

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