Warehouse Group, the country's biggest listed retailer, boosted third-quarter sales as its stationery business benefited from the start of the school year, underpinning revenue growth.

The retailer lifted sales 1.5 per cent to $381.5 million in the three months ended May 1, compared to the same period last year, with 4.3 per cent growth in Warehouse Stationery stores to $54.5 million.

It affirmed full-year profit guidance of between $76 million and $80 million.

"The Warehouse Stationery result was a solid one with the key 'back to school' event performing ahead of last year," outgoing chief executive Ian Morrice said in a statement.

"Easter trading was up on last year and positive momentum in key growth categories had been maintained" for the wider group, he said.

Still, year-to-date sales were down 0.5 per cent at $1.28 billion for the group as the retail sector struggles to gain traction in an ailing economy.

Retailers across the board have had to contend with tepid consumer spending as households look to repay outstanding debt, though the latest credit and debit card spending data indicated the expected gradual recovery is underway.

Today's sales figures mark the changeover in Warehouse management, with Mark Powell taking full operational responsibility for the group. He was tapped in February having previously been responsible for the stationery brand stores.

The shares fell 0.3 per cent to $3.69 in trading yesterday, and have gained 6 per cent this year.