Boxing Day sales up 13% – Paymark

Post-Christmas bargain hunters fulfilled retailers’ Boxing Day hopes with a 13.4% rise in sales recorded by eftpos company Paymark.

Paymark head of sales and marketing Paul Whiston says the numbers are a "fantastic finish" to what has been an already positive month of spending, and a return to the kinds of growth figures not seen since before the global financial crisis.

“Yesterday we saw over two million transactions and $120 million in sales through the network, $14.2 million up on Boxing Day last year. This is the first time in five years that we’ve seen double digit growth and we’re rapt for retailers,” he says.

“It’s also great to see that some of the sectors, which have been lagging of late, experienced a real boost on Boxing Day. And the queues and traffic outside the malls around the country yesterday were anecdotal evidence of this.”

Paymark saw significant growth in the electronics sector, including computers and phones, with sales up 31.7% annually.

The company, which processes about 75% of all electronic transactions, also saw strong growth in clothing and apparel, and jewellery, up 20.7% and 24.4% respectively.

“Department stores saw an increase of 22.4%, likely to be a reflection of the many great deals on offer for shoppers during the Boxing Day sales,” Mr Whiston says.

Gisborne had the highest spending growth in the regions, up 22.9% annually.

“All of the regions saw good growth on Boxing Day but the smaller regions in particular have fared extremely well, with Palmerston North up 18.3% and Taranaki/Taupo up 18.2% – just behind Gisborne,” Mr Whiston says.

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It's likely retail sales figures are substantially higher than those quoted here by Paymark given they only cover 75% of electronic transactions.

Once we add the other 25% of electronic transactions by other processors and I suspect the large amount of cash payments (real cash) not including debit transactions they would be much higher,

Its also not entirely clear that goods transacted by higher purchase and in a lot of cases no deposit with interest free loans and 2 or 3 years to pay are taken into account.

The sales figures are only a spike and shouldn't be seen as an improvement in the economy. Its expected that sales are now likely to fall.

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