Retail turnover increased 0.3 per cent in March, according to the latest statistics from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

This result follows on from a 0.9 per cent increase in February, with the director of Quarterly Economy Wide Surveys, Ben Faulkner, saying that Food retailing came out on top in March.

"Cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (1.4 per cent) and Food retailing (0.4 per cent) led the rises, with strength in food prices contributing to rises, especially in supermarkets and grocery stores.

"Clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (1.2 per cent) and Household goods retailing (0.2 per cent) also rose. The rises were partially offset by falls in Department stores (-1.5 per cent) and Other retailing (-0.4 per cent)," he said.

In seasonally adjusted terms, Victoria and the Northern Territory performed the strongest in March, both rising 0.7 per cent, while Queensland (0.6 per cent), New South Wales (0.2 per cent), Tasmania (0.4 per cent) and South Australia (0.1 per cent) also rose. The ACT experienced no change, while Western Australia declined 0.7 per cent in March 2019.

Online retailing contributed 5.7 per cent to the total retail turnover in March 2019, a 0.6 per cent increase compared to March 2018.

To read the full ABS report, click here.

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