First Hawaiian Reports Business Activity Best in 3 Years

January 14, 2013, 8:25 AM HST · Updated January 14, 9:28 AM
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First Hawaiian Bank, Kihei branch. Photo by Sonia Isotov

By Sonia Isotov

The  most recent First Hawaiian Bank Business Activity Report (BAR) showed an 11.31% increase in fourth quarter “same store sales” over the comparable period of 2011, making it the strongest quarter in the past three years, according to an announcement by Keith Nagata, senior vice president and business services manager.

It was the first time that all 16 sectors tracked in the report posted positive gains. For all of 2012, credit and debit card sales transactions increased by 9.83% over the previous year.

“With tourism rebounding we saw a very strong fourth quarter, resulting in the highest quarterly increase. For the first time since we started the survey three years ago, we saw positive gains in all 16 industry sectors,” Nagata said.  “This is very encouraging for our Hawaii economy and we hope that these positive trends will continue throughout 2013.”

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According to the report, the overall 9.83% increase for the year represents a three year upward trend which started with a 6.42% increase in same store sales activity in 2010 and an 8.60% increase in 2011.

The BAR tracks sales activity in 16 different economic sectors including automobile, retail, hotels, home improvement, restaurants, shipping and travel, among other categories.

First Hawaiian Bank is the largest local processor of credit and debit card transactions in Hawaii.  In 2012, the bank processed $4.3 billion worth of customer credit and debit card sales transactions. The bank provides merchant services to nearly 7,500 First Hawaiian Bank merchant locations throughout Hawaii, Guam, Commonwealth of Northern Marianas Islands and the US mainland.

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