WELLINGTON, Nov. 26 (Xinhua) -- Robust spending on electronics such as appliances, mobile phones, and computers helped boost total retail sales volumes in the September 2019 quarter, New Zealand's statistics department Stats NZ said on Tuesday.
The volume of total retail sales rose a solid 1.6 percent, after a modest 0.2-percent rise in the June quarter, Stats NZ.
Electrical and electronic goods retailing had the largest rise of all 15 retail industries, with sales volumes up 4.4 percent after increasing 5.2 percent in the June quarter, it said, adding this industry includes retailing for electrical appliances, mobile phones, and computer and technical equipment.
"Higher electronic sales volumes in the quarter coincided with some retailers promoting sales of big screen televisions before the Rugby World Cup in Japan, which started near the end of September," retail statistics manager Sue Chapman said in a statement.
The electrical and electronic goods industry has shown consistent growth for over seven years, after a slight fall in March 2012, Chapman said.
"Products like TVs, computers, and mobile phones are getting cheaper, and New Zealanders are buying more of them," she said.
Despite falling prices, sales values of this industry were up 3.4 percent in the September quarter, statistics showed.
Prices are adjusted to reflect quality changes. This includes allowances for technological enhancements, such as capacity and speed, Chapman said.
"At the same time as a rise in sales volumes and values, electronics retailers also boosted inventories significantly this year - up more than 20 percent compared with the September quarter in 2018," she said.
In total, 11 of the 15 retail industries had higher sales volumes in the September 2019 quarter. The second-largest increase was in department stores, up 3.5 percent this quarter following a 3.1-percent fall in the June 2019 quarter, according to Stats NZ.
Accommodation had the largest fall, down 1.4 percent this quarter after a 1.6-percent rise in the June 2019 quarter.
Total retail sales rose 1.4 percent, or 333 million NZ dollars (214 million U.S. dollars), in the September quarter, following a 0.7-percent rise in the June quarter.