Double-digit spending growth in BOP this Easter

Bay of Plenty shoppers spent nearly $93 million over the Easter break, more than 14 per cent up on the same period last year, according to Paymark figures.

Spending in the Bay of Plenty region for the week ending April 22 in the smaller regions outpaced the percentage growth in Auckland/Northland which was slower than most other regions in the country.

Eftpos card transactions in the Auckland/Northland region totalled $454m, down by 6 per cent for the same seven day period last year.

Easter once again led to a spending boost in the smaller regions, Paymark spokesman Paul Brislen said.

Underlying spending was up 14.5 per cent in the Bay of Plenty region, up 19.6 per cent in Gisborne, and 22.6 per cent in West Coast compared to the same week last year which did not include Easter, he said.

“Conversely, spending during the same seven days in 2019 was down 7.9 per cent in Canterbury and 6 per cent in Auckland/Northland compared to last year,” Brislen said.

Nationally, Paymark processed transactions worth $1.196 billion with an underlying decrease in spending of 0.8 per cent for the same period last year, the Paymark report stated.

Brislen said both the shift in regional spending and the overall spending decline was not unusual for Easter.

Spending swings from the busy Easter Thursday – the busiest day outside of December- with a total of $263m, up 44 per cent in underlying from Thursday, April 19, 2018, to sharp declines on Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

Brislen said the noteworthy exceptions were small grocery stores, fuel stations and hospitality providers.

Spending at grocery, liquor, fuel and hospitality merchants was responsible for almost all the regional spending increase, he said.

Tauranga Chamber of Commerce chief executive Stan Gregec said it was great news.

“This is confirmation that Tauranga and the Bay were humming, which is what we all already know anyway.

“The fine weather, heaps of things happening over the Easter weekend and people checking out the new malls – will all have contributed to it,” he said.

“Confidence fuels spending, and we have plenty of that at the moment in the Bay.”

To read the full Bay of Plenty Times news story, click here.

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