Electronic card spending in New Zealand is up 0.5 per cent in March, Statistics New Zealand has revealed.

The value of transactions, adjusted for seasonal effects, rose in three industries, but fell in five.

Core retail, excluding the motor vehicle-related industries, increased 0.9 per cent in March.

According to Statistics New Zealand, the increase was driven by the durables industry, which rose 2.5 per cent, after a 2.4 percent fall in February 2011. The durables industry includes furniture, hardware, and appliance retailing.

“Trends for the value of transactions in the total and retail series have been increasing since January 2009,” Statistics New Zealand said.

“The trend for core retail has generally been increasing since the series began in October 2002, but it has been easing since August 2010.”