Total retail sales volume in New Zealand declined by 3.4% in the third quarter (Q3) of 2023 compared with the same period in 2022, according to the country’s official data agency, Stats NZ.

The country recorded a 3.5% year-on-year (YoY) decrease in the June 2023 quarter.

Retail sales volume for supermarket and grocery stores increased by 1.0%. For clothing, footwear and personal accessories, the volume was up 4.0% in the September 2023 quarter compared with the June 2023 quarter.

Hardware, building and garden supplies recorded 2.9% growth in retail sales volumes in Q3 2023, while sales volumes of motor vehicles and parts as well as fuel retailing declined by 3.4% and 3.4% respectively.

Stats NZ business financial statistics manager Katrina Dewbery stated: “Decreases in hardware and motor vehicle retailing drove the fall in the total volume of retail sales in the September 2023 quarter, compared with the September 2022 quarter.”

14 of the country’s 16 regions reported higher seasonally adjusted sales values in Q3 2023 against the previous quarter.

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By GlobalData

Auckland posted a 1.5% growth in sales values during the quarter, while Canterbury and Wellington recorded 1.6% and 1.7% growth respectively.

Sales values for Otago increased 2.8% and Bay of Plenty recorded 1.7% growth.

The data revealed that 13 of 15 retail industries had lower total sales volumes in Q3 2023 compared with the corresponding period a year previously.

Total retail sales volumes excluding seasonal patterns, however, remained unchanged in the September 2023 quarter compared with the previous quarter.

This follows a 0.9% decrease in the June 2023 quarter compared with the March 2023 quarter.