Hawke's Bay has again topped the country for increased retail spending going into Christmas according to Paymark, which processes 75 per cent of electronic transactions.
The region's spend of $74.2 million for the first 14 days of December was 10.4 per cent greater than for the same period in 2015.
West Coast came in a close second with a 10.2 per cent increase and Bay of Plenty third with 9.5 per cent.
Spending growth was lowest in Gisborne and for Marlborough due to exceptional circumstances. Paymark includes quake-struck Kaikoura in its figures and Gisborne experienced a prolonged power cut after a fatal plane crash into a pylon.
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The national increase was 6.1 per cent.
Hastings City Business Association general manager Susan McDade said the figures matched retailers' anecdotes of "excellent" trading.
Hawke's Bay also topped the country for increased retail spending in November, when the $139.4 million spend was 11.8 per cent greater than for November 2015, ahead of Bay of Plenty on 9.8 per cent and Wairarapa on 9 per cent.
The national increase was 6.9 per cent.
Paymark said over the month of November the New Zealand accommodation sector surged 17.4 per cent suggestive of another strong year for the tourism sector, and 11 per cent in electrical and electronic spending.
The busiest hour of last week for Paymark was noon to 1pm Friday December 9 when 484,135 transactions were recorded in the hour.