Times are tough for small business retailers as consumer nerves hit them in the back pocket, National’s Small Business spokesperson Jacqui Dean says.
“The latest figures from Retail NZ showed 55 per cent of retailers did not meet their sales target over the Christmas trading period, and overall sales were down 7.6 per cent in October and 2.8 per cent in November compared with the previous year.
“That’s a bitter pill to swallow as Christmas is when retailers need to make their money. Retail is a tough environment for small businesses to operate in. Increased competition, rising costs, and a Government that offers scant support certainly doesn’t help.
“Consumers know the Government is out of its depth when it comes to managing the economy and that’s why they’re thinking twice before spending. If consumers are reluctant to spend amidst economic uncertainty, then it’s small business retailers who suffer.
“The news doesn’t get any better for small business retailers either. They’ll soon be feeling the effects of the upcoming minimum wage increase and will have to battle on under a government with no plans for growth.
“It’s no wonder that business confidence has tanked, there’s simply no respite for operators who want to work hard and get ahead.”