Sporting Events Boost 2Q New Zealand Retail Sales

By Ben Collins Features Dow Jones Newswires

WELLINGTON, New Zealand--New Zealand's retail spending grew at a faster pace than expected in the second quarter of 2017, outpacing the previous quarter after major sporting events lifted hospitality sales.

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The volume of retail sales increased 2% in the April-June period compared with the previous three months, Statistics New Zealand said Monday. This rise follows a gain of 1.6% in the first quarter of the year.

After adjusting for price and seasonal effects, retail sales volumes in the food and beverage services industry increased 4.2% in the quarter, Stats NZ said. This sector includes cafes, restaurants, bars, takeaways, and catering services.

"With more than 28,000 people attending the World Masters Games in late April, and the surge of 23,000 visitors from the U.K. and Ireland, many arriving for the Lions rugby series starting in June, there was an expected lift for food and drink providers," business indicators senior manager Daria Kwon said in a statement.

In overall value terms, retail sales gained 1.6% from the previous quarter, stronger than a 0.8% gain forecast by polled economists.

Write to Ben Collins at ben.collins@wsj.com

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(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 13, 2017 19:12 ET (23:12 GMT)