Shopping up a storm

Published: Mon 2 Dec 2019 01:57 PM
Media Release
Shopping up a storm
Monday 2 December 2019
Black Friday was busier than ever this year, with strong spending growth extending over the weekend.
Spending through the Paymark network totalled $253 million on Friday, making it the second busiest day of the year, following Easter Thursday. For many in retail it was the busiest day.
Merchants in the core retail group excluding food and hospitality processed payments through Paymark for $71.4 million goods, up 22.5% on Black Friday last year and surpassing Boxing Day last year ($63.8 million).
The magnitude of the sales attraction can be seen by comparing Black Friday this year with the last Friday in November 2018 (Black Friday last year fell a week earlier). The non-food and non-hospitality core retailers saw spending through Paymark jump by $21m or 42.6% relative to the Friday without the widespread discounting.
Department stores, clothing shops, furniture outlets, sports equipment retailers and toy and game shops experienced growth of over 60%.
Paymark figures also show a 28.7% increase in the volume of transactions relative to the non-sales Friday, implying a higher average transaction payment, which could result from purchases of a larger ticket item and/or of multiple items.
Over the three days of the extended shopping weekend – and with Cyber Monday still underway – the total value of transactions through Paymark totaled $652 million, up 12.8% in underlying terms from the Black Friday three-days weekend last year. Besides strong sales-driven Black Friday activity in shops, there were also strong increases in spending through Supermarkets, Hairdressers and Internet Service Providers. It seems we were simply keen to shop.
The spending growth was strongest in Wellington and Bay Of Plenty, although the largest increase in dollar terms was in Auckland & Northland (up $30.5 million).
Paymark region* (ranked by growth)Total spending ($m) Fri/Sun 29 Nov -1st Dec 2019Underlying annual % change (vs Fri-Sun 23-25th 2018)Wellington$62.715.5%BOP$43.714.3%Waikato$47.113.9%Canterbury$73.413.6%Auckland & Northland$267.813.2%Palmerston North$20.612.9%Wairarapa$5.912.3%South Canterbury$9.212.1%Hawke’s Bay$17.911.6%Gisborne$5.211.4%Marlborough$8.010.8%Southland$15.110.7%Otago$36.110.6%Wanganui$5.99.3%Taranaki$12.06.6%Nelson$11.36.2%New Zealand$652.012.8%
* West Coast not tabled due to distortions caused by large one-off transactions
The Black Friday weekend is also part of the general build-up to Christmas. At this stage spending to date in the 42 days before Christmas Day is up 3.4% on the same days before Christmas in 2018. The boost in spending over the weekend has pushed the 2019 “worm” ahead its 2018 equivalent (see graph).
The last seven days before Christmas are traditionally the busiest shopping days of the year – busier than Black Friday and Boxing Day. There are likely to be three very busy shopping days this year, based on the pattern of 2013 when Christmas Day was last on a Wednesday, with possibly Christmas Eve pipping the Friday and Monday before as the busiest day.

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