Electronic Card Transactions: March 2010

Embargoed until 10:45am  –  13 April 2010
Media release  – 
Value of transactions up in March

Key facts

These statistics are based on electronic card transactions during March 2010. Figures are seasonally adjusted unless otherwise stated. See the 'Technical notes' section for industry descriptors.

 Changes in the value of transactions (compared with February 2010) were as follows:
  • Transactions in the core retail industries were up (2.2 percent).
  • Transactions in the retail industries were up (2.1 percent).
  • Total electronic card transactions were up (1.2 percent).
  • By industry group, durables, consumables, and fuel had the largest increases.

The actual (not seasonally adjusted) value of transactions in the core retail series was up 4.6 percent from March 2009.

The seasonally adjusted values of core retail, retail, and total electronic card transactions were all up in March 2010. Core retail (which excludes the motor vehicle-related industries) was up 2.2 percent compared with February 2010. This increase, the biggest since November 2004, reflects an increase in the value of transactions in all core retail industries.

Transactions in the retail industries were up 2.1 percent in March 2010, the largest monthly rise since November 2007. The main contributors to this increase – as with core retail – were durables and consumables. These were added to by an increase in the fuel industry, which coincided with a rise in fuel prices.    

When the non-retail industries are included, the total value of transactions was up by a lesser 1.2 percent. The non-retail industries were down 0.2 percent in March 2010. 

Trends for the value of transactions in the core retail, retail, and total series have all been increasing since January 2009, although at different rates. These trend estimates may be revised and should be used with caution until more data points are available:

  • the core retail trend has eased gradually since April 2009 and is now flat, up just 0.1 percent in each of the last five months
  • the rate of increase in the retail trend has eased since it peaked at 0.6 percent in October 2009 
  • the total trend has increased by 6.0 percent since January 2009. Latest figures indicate that the monthly growth rate has been increasing since October 2009.
Geoff Bascand

13 April 2010

Government Statistician

ISSN 1178-0258