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COVID-19
Spend Report.

How we are spending as a population from before and through COVID-19.

13 July 2020

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How is our spend data produced?

Data Ventures is working together with the major card processing companies in New Zealand.

Using the aggregated and anonymised card spend data[*] provided to us, along with Stats NZ expertise, Data Ventures has created spend estimates in New Zealand down to council level. Read more in the footnotes page.

Spend – a view of the whole nation

As our population reacts to the environment of COVID-19, there is evidence of change in spending patterns around New Zealand. Because of that, it’s now worth looking at our country as a whole. To do that we have highlighted the total spend and the average spend per transaction to show the changing spend behaviours as we continue through COVID-19 Alert levels.

Total spend

0%

CHANGE IN THE
LAST 2 WEEKS

Avg. spend per transaction

-2%

CHANGE IN THE
LAST 2 WEEKS

Total spending has remained flat over the past 4 weeks. This could be the start of a new normal in terms of spending in New Zealand. With financial support from the government still in place until the beginning of September, it would be interesting to see if the current trend continues as we approach that date. Average spend per transaction is down from the previous period. This could suggest that Kiwis are less restricted in their movements and doing less bulk planned spending as seen during lockdown.

NOTE: The vertical lines represent COVID-19 Alert Levels as they progressed, starting at the first line when NZ borders closed, through to our current alert level.

Our Spend – index during COVID‑19

In this section we explore our spend index[*] around the purchasing behaviours of New Zealand in six key categories during COVID-19.

Our index measure is created using the combination of transactional value and volume over a period of time. This allows us to get an idea of the index between each day of 2020 in this report compared to similar days from before the COVID-19 period.

We have grouped various industry spend classifications into six categories. You can read the footnotes where we highlight what industry classifications fit in what categories.

hospitality

consumables

durables

fuel

apparel

services

NOTE: The vertical lines represent COVID-19 Alert Levels as they progressed, starting at the first line when NZ borders closed, through to our current alert level.

Our spend – before COVID‑19 and now

By looking at the daily spend index[*] across the country, we can get a good idea of how behaviour has changed in response to COVID-19. The data presented here shows the changes for six categories in New Zealand - Hospitality. Consumables, Durables, Fuel, Apparel, and Services.

In this part of the report, we cover off three periods: a normal week in early 2020, two weeks ago, and one week ago. We have broken out the comparisons into two: one comparing last week to a normal week in early 2020 to see the changes compared to earlier in the year, and the other comparing what has happened over the last two weeks. From doing this, these are the insights we have discovered.

hospitality

1 week ago v Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago

Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago v 2 weeks ago

1 week ago

2 weeks ago

consumables

1 week ago v Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago

Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago v 2 weeks ago

1 week ago

2 weeks ago

durables

1 week ago v Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago

Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago v 2 weeks ago

1 week ago

2 weeks ago

fuel

1 week ago v Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago

Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago v 2 weeks ago

1 week ago

2 weeks ago

apparel

1 week ago v Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago

Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago v 2 weeks ago

1 week ago

2 weeks ago

services

1 week ago v Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago

Jan 2020/Feb 2020

1 week ago v 2 weeks ago

1 week ago

2 weeks ago

The change of spend index across regions before and during COVID‑19.

In this section we explore the spend index[*] patterns in the regions of New Zealand during COVID-19.

Our index measure is created using the combination of transactional value and volume over a period of time. This allows us to get an idea of the index between each day of 2020 in this report compared to similar days from before the COVID-19 period.

northland

auckland

waikato

bay of plenty

gisborne

hawke's bay

taranaki

manawatu-whanganui

wellington

west coast

canterbury

otago

southland

tasman

nelson

marlborough

NOTE: The vertical lines represent COVID-19 Alert Levels as they progressed, starting at the first line when NZ borders closed, through to our current alert level.

The change of spend across regions last week compared to before COVID‑19

The purpose of this comparison is to see how we are tracking in our spending behaviour changes throughout COVID-19 and its various Alert Levels (1 through to 4). As Alert Levels are escalated/de-escalated, this is a good way to understand the impacts on New Zealand’s spend behaviour over the duration of COVID-19.

1 week ago v jan 2020/feb 2020

Our Data Ventures spend index indicates that it is still noticeably lower than earlier in the year. This will be a good ongoing indicator on the progress of recovery in spending post COVID-19.

The change to the spend index across regions across the last two weeks

The purpose of this comparison is to see how we are tracking in our spending behaviour changes throughout COVID-19 and its various Alert Levels (1 through to 4). As Alert Levels are escalated/de-escalated, this is a good way to understand the week-to-week impacts on New Zealand’s spend behaviour.

1 week ago v 2 weeks ago

On a week by week basis we see spending increases across the board except for Auckland. This suggests that there is plenty of domestic tourism occurring with the main benefactors being the West Coast and Otago from the ski season. Many of the rural regions saw much needed spending increases as they have been the hardest hit areas from COVID-19.