The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

Kiwis spending more on food and alcohol this winter

New data on consumer spending processed through Worldline NZ’s payments network shows spending through food and liquor stores in June was up 9.4% on the same month last year.

Consumer spending in June 2023 through all core retail merchants (excluding hospitality) in Worldline NZ’s payments network reached $2.908B, which is up 5.3% on June 2022, and up 18.9% on the same month in 2019.

Worldline NZ’s Chief Sales Officer, Bruce Proffit, says these numbers show spending patterns have not changed much in the last few weeks compared to the previous month, although pockets of higher spending activity were evident in Whanganui and Otago.

“Spending on non-food items, in aggregate, remains below that of 12 months ago while food spending is running higher throughout the nation,” says Proffit.

Around the regions, the highest annual growth rate was recorded by Core Retail merchants (excluding hospitality) in Whanganui (+11.2%).

The lowest growth rate was in Wellington (3.4%), although other large centres, such as Canterbury (+4.7%) and Auckland/Northland (+5.5%), did not fare much better.

Gisborne’s annual spending growth (+5.7%) was slightly above the national average but this statistic conceals underlying challenges such as the sharply lower spending on the days of the storms and an 8.2% annual decline amongst hospitality merchants for the month.

Meanwhile, Hospitality spending in Otago was up 6.1%, likely due in part to steadily rising accommodation spending in the last couple of weeks as the ski season gathers momentum, and ahead of the busy school holiday period.

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