Economic research & market strategy

Here you will find economic research, strategy and forecasts direct from our specialists.

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Weekly Commentaries

Weekly Commentary

Weekly coverage of recent and upcoming economic and market events.

March 12
March 5

February 26

To view archived reports click here.

Economic Data Reports

RBNZ OCR preview, March 2018 – Last turn at bat - 16 March 2018
Acting Governor Spencer’s last OCR decision is likely to be a low-key affair, with no real surprises in the data in recent weeks. We expect the OCR to remain on hold until late 2019.

NZ Q4 GDP review – Subdued growth persists - 15 March 2018
December quarter GDP grew by 0.6%, in line with our forecast. We expect growth to remain subdued in the near term, due to growth constraints and the uncertain impact of the new Government’s policies.

NZ current account, Q4 2017 – Well contained - 14 March 2018
The current account deficit widened in the year to December, but remains at levels consistent with an improvement in New Zealand’s external imbalances.

NZ Q4 GDP and BoP preview – Late fade - 9 March 2018
The New Zealand economy’s momentum appears to have eased over the course of 2017.

NZ building work put in place, December quarter 2017 - 7 March 2018 

Fortnightly Agri Update - 7 March 2018 - 7 March 2018 

Q4 2017 Retail spending review - 23 February 2018

Fortnightly Agri Update - 21 February 2018

Get it? A short note on our GDP and OCR forecasts compared to the Reserve Bank's - 12 February 2018

Stay on target – Review of the Feb 2018 Monetary Policy Statement - 8 February 2018
A review of the RBNZ’s latest Monetary Policy Statement.

NZ labour market review, Q4 2017 – All work, no pay - 2 February 2018
New Zealand’s unemployment rate fell to its lowest since 2008. But wage growth remains subdued, suggesting that the labour market has room to tighten further. 

Fortnightly Agri Update - 7 February 2018 

NZ labour market preview, Q4 2017 – Unemployment declining - 2 February 2018
We expect a further drop in the unemployment rate to a nine-year low of 4.5%. However, we may see some payback for the sharp spikes in employment and participation in the September quarter. 

The great moderation: Preview of the February 2018 Monetary Policy Statement - 1 February 2018
We expect the RBNZ to remain firmly on hold.

NZ CPI review Q4 2017 – Imported inflation remains absent  - 25 January 2018
Consumer prices rose just 0.1% in the December quarter, with widespread softness in imported goods prices. While the era of uncomfortably low inflation may have passed, there is little sign of a resurgence.

NZ CPI preview, Q4 2017 – Fuelled up and on the go - 17 January 2018
We expect a 0.4% rise in the December quarter CPI, led by higher prices for fuel, airfares and accommodation. Underlying inflation is expected to remain close to – but still below – the Reserve Bank’s 2% target.

NZ business opinion, Q4 2017 – Confidence down, prices up - 16 January 2018
Business confidence fell further in the December quarter, some but not all of which could be put down to the change of government. However, more firms expect costs and prices to rise as the economy runs closer to full capacity.

NZ Q3 GDP review – It’s the most wonderful time of the year - 21 December 2017
September quarter GDP was better than we expected, but the real surprise was the extent of the upward revisions to GDP over the last few years. The apparent slowdown in per-capita growth has largely disappeared.

NZ current account, Q3 2017 – Better times - 20 December 2017
The current account deficit narrowed to 2.6% of GDP in the year to September. New Zealand’s external imbalances are looking more manageable.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 20 December 2017
Weather is a major factor that affects NZ Agricultural practices and economic growth. 

New Zealand Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2017 - 14 December 2017
The Half Year Fiscal and Economic Update showed surprisingly little change in the bottom-line projections compared to previous forecasts, but this was based on economic forecasts that we view as too optimistic. 

NZ Q3 GDP and BoP preview – Soft spot - 14 December 2017
The September quarter is likely to mark the weakest point for GDP growth this year. We expect a narrowing of the current account deficit. 

Home Truths, October 2017 - A brief respite - 13 December 2017
Home Truths argues that the current housing market upturn will be short lived.

NZ Local Knowledge - 7 December 2017
The New Zealand economy slowed in the September quarter, but looks to have made a strong start to the December quarter.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 6 December 2017
Weather is a major factor that affects NZ Agricultural practices and economic growth. 

NZ building work put in place, September quarter 2017 - 5 December 2017
Construction activity picked up in September, rising by 2.7%. This was mainly related to a lift in residential building. 

RBNZ eases lending restrictions a little - 29 November 2017
The Reserve Bank announced a modest loosening of loan-to-value limits for housing lending next year, as housing market risks have diminished.

NZ retail spending review, September quarter 2017 - 23 November 2017
Retail sales growth pulled back in September as earlier boosts to spending faded.  We expect spending growth will remain modest over the coming year.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 22 November 2017

Glass half full: Review of the November 2017 Monetary Policy Statement - 9 November 2017
The RBNZ left its OCR guidance unchanged, but this was based on optimistic GDP forecasts.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 8 November 2017

Tumbling Kiwi keeps RBNZ on track – Preview of the Nov 2017 Monetary Policy Statement - 2 November 2017
Preview of the November 2017 Monetary Policy Statement.

NZ labour market review, Q3 2017 – Room for more? - 1 November 2017
The unemployment rate improved further in the September quarter. But wage growth remains subdued, suggesting that the economy is still shy of what could be considered full employment.

NZ labour market preview, September quarter 2017 - 25 October 2017
We expect that the labour market continued its gradual strengthening over the September quarter.

Home Truths, October 2017 - Unchartered waters - 25 October 2017
Home Truths investigates prospects for New Zealand’s housing market following the election.

A step to the left – First impressions of a new Government - 20 October 2017
New Zealand First have formed a minority coalition government with Labour, with confidence and supply from the Greens. We assess the likely impact on the economy.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 18 October 2017

NZ CPI review Q3 2017 – On the house - 17 October 2017
Consumer prices rose 0.5% for the quarter, as expected. Annual inflation is close to the RBNZ’s target midpoint, but the risk of a break higher is low if the housing market remains subdued as we expect.

NZ CPI preview, September quarter 2017 – Signs of life - 12 October 2017
September quarter inflation is shaping up to be livelier than the RBNZ expected, though still in the lower half of the target range.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 4 October 2017

NZ Local Knowledge - 3 October 2017
Monthly indicators suggest weaker growth momentum coming into the September quarter.

NZ business opinion, Q3 2017 – More of the same - 3 October 2017
Headline confidence down, but survey details consistent with steady growth. 

Subtle changes – Review of the Sep 2017 OCR decisions - 28 September 2017
The RBNZ left the OCR outlook unchanged, but hinted at a lower GDP growth forecast.

New Zealand’s 2017 election: Implications for financial markets - 25 September 2017
New Zealand’s general election left New Zealand First in the monarch-maker position. We explore the implications for financial markets and the economy.

Tin Whistle – Preview of the RBNZ OCR Review - 22 September 2017
The RBNZ is likely to play a straight bat at its OCR Review next week.

NZ Q2 GDP review – Modest rebound - 21 September 2017
NZ GDP growth benefited from a one-off tourism boost and a rebound from some temporary disruptions, but the underlying pace of growth remains subdued.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 20 September 2017

A guide to the 2017 New Zealand election for financial markets - 19 September 2017
This bulletin previews New Zealand’s General Election, scheduled for Saturday 23 September.

NZ GDP and Balance of Payments Preview, June quarter 2017 - 14 September 2017
Following softness in the previous two quarters, we estimate that GDP rose by 0.8% in the June quarter, to be up 2.8% over the past year. The annual current account deficit is expected to remain around 3.1% of GDP.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 6 September 2017

Fortnightly Agri Update - 16 August 2017

RBNZ MPS review, August 2017 – A matter of time - 10 August 2017
The RBNZ expects to keep interest rates low for a long time in order to generate a sustained lift in inflation. We now expect OCR hikes to be delayed until the end of 2019.

Monetary Policy Statement preview, August 2017 - 4 August 2017
The RBNZ may well surprise markets by emphasising the recent run of weak data and the high exchange rate. The RBNZ will probably reiterate that it is not considering OCR hikes within the foreseeable future.

NZ labour market review, June quarter 2017 - 2 August 2017
June’s labour market figures were very close to market expectations. Unemployment fell to 4.8% (down from 4.9%). Looking through quarter-to-quarter volatility, the economy looks to be expanding at a moderate pace.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 2 August 2017

NZ labour market preview, June quarter 2017 - 28 July 2017
New Zealand’s June quarter labour market figures are expected to show that employment is continuing to rise, underpinned by firm economic activity. However, growing labour force participation means that the unemployment rate is expected to remain at 4.9%.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 19 July 2017

NZ CPI review Q2 2017 – Been and gone - 18 July 2017
The jump in March quarter consumer prices was followed by a muted June quarter, taking annual inflation down to 1.7%.

NZ CPI preview, June quarter 2017 - Back down below - 13 July 2017
After a strong March quarter outturn, we expect a subdued 0.1% rise in consumer prices over the June quarter, taking annual inflation down to 1.8%.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 5 July 2017

NZ Regional Economic Confidence, June quarter 2017 - 28 June 2017
Regional economic confidence improved in most parts of New Zealand in the June quarter. However, confidence has continued to slide in the Auckland region, and remains below its highs in Canterbury.

RBNZ OCR review, June 2017 – A statement of neutrality - 22 June 2017
The RBNZ remains in a firmly neutral stance, with recent developments having a balanced impact on the inflation outlook. We expect no change in the OCR until 2019.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 21 June 2017

NZ Westpac McDermott Miller Consumer Confidence, June quarter 2017 - 19 June 2017
June saw widespread gains in consumer confidence. However, spending appetites have softened. Households don’t seem worried about debt repayment, despite high levels of debt.

RBNZ OCR preview, June 2017 – Firmly, firmly neutral - 16 June 2017
We expect the RBNZ to hold the OCR at 1.75% and reaffirm its neutral bias. The starting point for the economy is softer than expected, and the recent jump in inflation will be regarded as temporary.

NZ Q1 GDP review – Coming up short again - 15 June 2017
GDP fell short of expectations again, rising by 0.5% in the March quarter. Some of the weakness is likely to be temporary, but the broader picture is that growth per-person remains quite modest.

NZ current account, Q1 2017 – No cause for alarm - 14 June 2017
New Zealand’s current account deficit widened in the March quarter, but some of the drivers appear to be temporary and the nation’s funding requirement remains manageable.

NZ Local Knowledge - 13 June 2017
A reasonably strong set of activity indicators for April, but the pace of growth is past its peak.

NZ Q1 GDP and BoP preview – There and back again - 9 June 2017
We expect a 0.8% rise in GDP for the March quarter, as dairy and mining output rebound from a weak December quarter. The current account deficit is expected to widen as weak export volumes outweigh higher prices.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 7 June 2017

NZ building work put in place, March 2017 quarter - 6 May 2017
Construction softened in early 2017, while cost pressures continue to mount.

NZ Budget 2017 review - 25 May 2017
Having your cake and eating it too.

Budget 2017 First Impressions - 25 May 2017
Having your cake and eating it too.

NZ Budget 2017 preview – More of everything - 24 May 2017
A stronger tax take means room for both more spending and larger surpluses.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 17 May 2017

RBNZ May 2017 Monetary Policy Statement review - 11 May 2017
The RBNZ left the OCR unchanged in May, and continued to signal an extended period of low rates.

NZ Local Knowledge - 10 May 2017
Activity indicators were mixed in March. Growth in household spending looks to have lost some momentum, while building consent issuance and agriculture production have recovered from slumps late last year.

RBNZ MPS preview, May 2017 – A new challenge - 5 May 2017
We expect the Reserve Bank to hold the OCR at 1.75%, but with a stronger signal that the next move in rates will be up.

NZ labour market review, March quarter 2017 - 3 May 2017
New Zealand’s unemployment rate fell to 4.9% in the March quarter, a lower level than analysts had expected. This was underpinned by firm employment growth.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 3 May 2017

NZ Q1 labour market preview - 27 April 2017
Jobs growth is expected to remain firm in Q1. However, increases in the labour force means the unemployment rate will remain steady. Wage growth remains modest.

NZ CPI review Q1 2017 – Inflation pulse strengthening - 20 April 2017
The underlying pace of inflation in New Zealand is picking up, although the headline inflation rate overstates how quickly and abruptly this has happened.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 19 April 2017

Early arrival - NZ CPI preview, Q1 2017 - 13 April 2017
We expect annual inflation to reach 2% in the March quarter, boosted by the rebound in world oil prices and a temporary jump in food prices.

NZ Local Knowledge - 10 April 2017
Activity indicators were subdued in February, after moderate results in recent months. Trends in agriculture production have improved and sentiment in the services sector remains upbeat, while the housing market has flattened off.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 5 April 2017

NZIER Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion, March quarter 2017 - 4 April 2017
Firms remained upbeat about their own activity in the March quarter, indicative of a decent pace of economic growth through the first half of this year. Pricing intentions rose for a second quarter, but we view these increases as consistent with a pick-up in inflation to moderate levels rather than a sustained over-shoot of the Reserve Bank’s target.

RBNZ OCR Review, March 2017 - Hold the line - 23 March 2017
The Reserve Bank left the Official Cash Rate unchanged at 1.75% and maintained that interest rates will remain low for a considerable time. Near-term inflation is shaping up stronger than expected, but the RBNZ seems to share our view that this is due to temporary factors.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 22 March 2017

RBNZ OCR preview, March 2017 – The little engine that could? - 17 March 2017
We expect the RBNZ to hold the OCR at 1.75% and maintain a neutral bias. Near-term inflation is looking a bit stronger, but recent data casts some doubt on whether the economy is running strong enough to generate a sustained lift in inflation. 

Q4 GDP-Review-March-2017 - 16 March 2017
GDP rose by 0.4% in the December quarter, led by gains in services which are benefitting from the growing population base. 

Q4 BOP-Review-March-2017 - 15 March 2017
The current account narrowed to 2.7% of GDP in the year to December. 

Easing back – NZ GDP and Current Account Preview, Q4 2016 - 10 March 2017
We expect a modest 0.5% rise in December quarter GDP, with declines in primary production and manufacturing weighing on growth. A rebound in tourism exports and lower import prices are likely to have narrowed the current account deficit.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 8 March 2017

NZ construction activity continuing to climb - 3 March 2017
Construction activity continued to increase in December quarter, with widespread gains. We expect construction levels will remain strong for some time.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 22 February 2017

NZ Q4 retail sales review - 17 February 2017
The December quarter saw only a moderate gain in retail spending, with sales volumes up 0.8%. While spending growth in the past two quarters has been on the soft side, this follows strong gains earlier in the year. Over the year as whole, we saw a solid 4% lift in spending volumes.

RBNZ February 2017 MPS review - 9 February 2017
At its February interest rate decision, the Reserve Bank kept the Official Cash Rate at 1.75%. We expect the OCR to remain on hold for an extended period.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 8 February 2017

NZ Local Knowledge - 7 February 2017
Activity indicators were mixed in December, consistent with a solid but not spectacular end to the year for GDP growth. But with population growth continuing to run hot, the picture on a per-capita basis remains much more moderate.

RBNZ MPS preview, February 2017 – No need for further action - 2 February 2017
We expect the RBNZ to hold the OCR at 1.75% and maintain a neutral bias. Inflation is finally back within the target range but will struggle to pick up much further this year. And financial conditions have already tightened significantly since November. 

NZ Q4 2016 labour market review - The force is strong with this one - 1 February 2017
NZ unemployment rose by more than expected in Q4 as the labour force continued to grow. Jobs growth was slightly stronger than expected, however wage growth remains muted. 

Tis the season - NZ Consumer Price Index review, Q4 2016 - 26 January 2017
Annual inflation has finally lifted back within the RBNZ’s target band. However, we suspect that some of the December quarter’s strength will be short-lived, and that inflation will struggle to push much higher over 2017.

NZ Q4 labour market preview - 25 January 2017
We’re expecting to see further growth in employment in December on the back of firm economic activity.

Getting the band back - NZ Consumer Price Index preview, Q4 2016 - 19 January 2017 
We expect annual inflation to rise to 1.2% in the December quarter, bringing it back within RBNZ’s target band for the first time in more than two years.

Fortnightly Agri Update - 18 January 2017

Pause for breath – NZIER Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion, December quarter 2016 - 17 January 2017
Business confidence and firms’ expectations for their own activity eased back in the December quarter, but remain at levels consistent with a continuation of solid economic growth. There was a notable rise in firms’ pricing intentions, although underlying price pressures look a bit softer than the headline figures suggest.

To view archived reports click here.

Deeper Insights

In-depth review of topical issues.

Deeper insights

  • NZ Industry Insight - International Education  - 1 February 2018
    This report focuses on the international education industry which is concerned with the export of educational services to full fee paying international students coming into New Zealand. 
  • A look at recent migration trends in New Zealand - 8 December 2017
    While still elevated, net migration has turned and it’s set to fall sharply. This will be a significant drag on growth over the coming years.
  • Transport driving for success October 2017 - 13 October 2017
    This bulletin provides a brief assessment of the quality of New Zealand’s road and rail networks.
  • NZ Industry Insight – Residential Building - 13 September 2017
    This report focuses on the residential building industry which is concerned with project managing the construction of dwellings, ranging from standalone houses to high-density apartment blocks.
  • Home truths - A tale of three cities - 7 April 2017
    Pressures in the housing market are one of the largest challenges that the New Zealand economy is currently confronting. In this edition of Home Truths, we look at the varied housing market conditions in New Zealand’s three main centres. While there are some similarities, each is facing its own challenges that they will be wrestling with for years to come.
  • NZ Industry Insights – Meat and Wool - 8 November 2016
    The meat and wool sector faces a number of challenges including processing overcapacity, a modest outlook for lamb and wool products, and the perennial question of how to maximise dollars per kilogram of product.
  • NZ Industry Insights – Healthcare and Social Support Services - 6 October 2016
    The healthcare and social support services sector is growing rapidly. Public expectations of the sector will continue to outstrip available funds.

  • A look at New Zealand retail spending by region - 29 September 2016
    Retail spending in New Zealand has been trucking along. Over the past year sales rose by 4.5% in nominal terms, and they’re up 18% since 2012. However, there are stark differences across the economy. In this report, we look at how spending has been shaping up in different parts of the country.
  • NZ Industry Insights: Māori in the New Zealand economy - 6 September 2016
    Māori are facing a period of incredible opportunity for economic growth, with a young and growing population, and increasing economic scale at the collective and SME level.

  • NZ Industry Insights Horticulture - 28 July 2016
    The horticulture sector is enjoying strong growth across many products. A lot more growth is possible, but some risks associated with export concentration and land values are emergings.
  • NZ household debt climbing relative to other economies - 12 July 2016
    Household debt in New Zealand has risen to record levels, and it has been rising at a faster pace than in other developed economics. In large part, this has been due to the strong gains in New Zealand house prices. The increase in household debt doesn’t mean that the economy is about to topple over. However, it is likely to provide a brake on longer term growth, and means that we are more vulnerable to unfavourable changes in economic conditions. 

  • The aftermath of the Brexit vote - 28 June 2016
    Following the Brexit vote, we take a look at some of the key questions regarding the UK’s economic outlook, and how New Zealand might be affected.

  • Core workout - Assessing the RBNZ's core inflation measure - 22 February 2016
    The RBNZ has recently been drawing attention to its model-derived estimate of core inflation, which is much more stable than headline inflation. In this article we review how the RBNZ's core inflation measure is calculated, the limitations of this approach, and what it may tell us about the future of inflation.
  • The Paris Agreement: What it means for the New Zealand economy - 4 February 2016
    New Zealand is a signatory to the Paris Agreement on climate change. This report examines and evaluates the impacts on New Zealand of the Agreement and the ETS framework.

To view archived reports click here.

Quarterly Economic Overview / Regional Roundup

Quarterly publication providing an in-depth economic outlook, topical issues and forecasts.

February 2018
Stats NZ has revised the history of GDP to something that makes more sense. The New Zealand economy was on fire during 2015 and 2016, but slowed in 2017. We expect it will remain slow in 2018 due to a weak housing market and low business confidence. The economy will not be strong enough to generate much inflation, so we expect the OCR to remain on hold until late 2019. Meanwhile, inflation is appearing in the United States, and US interest rates are set to start rising more aggressively. Later this year the US Government may be paying higher interest rates on 10-year bonds than the New Zealand Government. This hasn’t happened since 1994, and will surely have consequences for the exchange rate. 

November 2017
We have made significant changes to our economic forecasts for this Economic Overview, mainly due to the change of government. Government plans to borrow and spend will stimulate the economy, but plans to dampen the housing market and migration will have the opposite effect. We expect the economy to slow in 2018 before gaining momentum in 2019.

August 2017
The New Zealand economy is set to continue growing at a firm pace over the coming year. However, some of the big drivers of activity in recent years have started to dissipate, and we expect that growth will slow to low rates before the decade is out.

May 2017
The New Zealand economy is expected to continue growing at around 3% per annum over the coming years. However, there are some subtle but important changes happening to the mix of factors underpinning growth. At the same time, while inflation looks to be past its lows, the Reserve Bank is under no pressure to raise rates to head off the risk of an overshoot in inflation.

February 2017
New Zealand finds itself in something of a sweet spot right now. The economy has been growing at a steady pace for some time, and a strong pipeline of building work and an improvement in dairy prices will help to keep that momentum going. 

November 2016
Stronger population growth, rising business confidence and a rebound in milk prices point to a more enduring period of growth for the New Zealand economy. Dealing with the growing pipeline of building work will be a significant challenge over the coming years.

August 2016
The Economic Overview summarises the outlook for the New Zealand economy, global economy, agriculture sector, interest rates and exchange rates. This quarter’s special topic looks that the growth in New Zealand’s household debt in a global context.

May 2016
The Economic Overview summarises the outlook for the New Zealand economy, global economy, agriculture sector, interest rates and exchange rate. This quarter's two special topics cover macro-prudential policy options and the services sector.

February 2016
The Economic Overview summarises the outlook for the New Zealand economy, global economy, agriculture sector, interest rates and exchange rate. This quarter's special topic covers New Zealand's commitments under the Paris Protocol.

November 2015
The New Zealand economy has dodged the worst of the downturn in world dairy prices, but the slowing global economy and the risk of drought this summer will continue to weigh on agriculture. We expect GDP growth to slow to 2% next year - no more than population growth - before accelerating again in 2017. Through these ups and downs we expect one dynamic to remain constant: low inflation.

August 2015
New Zealand's economic outlook has changed. There has been a ferocious decline in the global price of New Zealand's biggest export, and the Canterbury rebuild has peaked nine months earlier than anticipated. This Economic Overview discusses the revised outlook, including our expectation that GDP growth will fall below 2%, unemployment will rise to 6.5%, and the OCR will fall to 2.0%.

May 2015
A summary of the prospects for New Zealand's economy, interest rates, exchange rate and agricultural sector, plus an overview of the global economy.

February 2015
A summary of the prospects for New Zealand's economy, interest rates, exchange rate and agricultural sector, plus an overview of the global economy.

November 2014
A summary of the prospects for New Zealand's economy, interest rates, exchange rate and agricultural sector, plus an overview of the global economy.

August 2014
A summary of the prospects for New Zealand's economy, interest rates, exchange rate and agricultural sector, plus an overview of the global economy.

May 2014
As New Zealand's economic upswing rolls on, we are starting to see encouraging signs that the economy still has room to grow without generating excessive inflation. However, we still expect a substantial OCR hiking cycle over the coming three years. This year's election is a key risk event - the Special Topic this quarter provides a guide for financial markets.

February 2014
The construction boom and rising house prices are now maturing themes for the New Zealand economy. This quarter, the NZ Economic Overview focusses on the causes and consequences of New Zealand's stratospheric export commodity prices.

November 2013
Comprehensive analysis and forecasts of the New Zealand economy, global economy, and financial markets.

August 2013
New Zealand is now clearly in the grip of a self-sustaining economic upswing, driven by construction activity and house prices. Our Economic Overview discusses the implications for interest rates while noting that the upturn will prove temporary. The remaining "forks in the road" for New Zealand include the question of Fed tapering and the possible impact of the RBNZ's new mortgage restrictions. Our expectation of a substantial OCR hiking cycle has not changed.

May 2013
The New Zealand economy is caught in a tug-of-war between high GDP growth and low inflation. The May Economic Overview includes articles on the New Zealand economy, New Zealand dollar, inflation and interest rates, and the international outlook. Our new section, Agricultural Outlook, covers the impact of drought on the New Zealand economy. And our special topic discusses the Reserve Bank's macroprudential tools.

February 2013
The economy is starting to move as the Canterbury rebuild hits its straps. But the stratospheric exchange rate has kept inflation in check. So the RBNZ has been able to keep interest rates low. The predictable result has been improved consumer confidence and higher house prices. Our forecasts for 2013 follow the same formula, but with greater intensity on all fronts.

November 2012
After a strong start to 2012, the New Zealand economy has lost momentum, reflecting the patchiness of the current construction-led economic upturn.

August 2012
Growth is accelerating but low inflation and the strong exchange rate mean interest rates will stay low for longer. This edition of the Economic Outlook discusses the possibility that rising house prices will reignite New Zealand's economic imbalances.

May 2012
The global economy has cooled as expected, but the surprisingly strong NZ dollar and soft inflation point to low interest rates for a while longer.

February 2012
Export conditions are deteriorating, but we envisage a dip rather than a disaster. Low interest rates will boost the housing market.


Regional Roundup

Quarterly focus on the outlook for New Zealand's regions.

Regional Roundup - 18 December 2017
This report assesses recent economic activity in regional New Zealand, providing an outlook for each region.

Regional Roundup - 24 November 2016
The outlook for New Zealand’s regions is generally stronger than it was three months ago on the back of dairy’s recovery, and continued strong population growth.

Regional Roundup - 18 August 2016
The fortunes of New Zealand’s regions vary depending on their exposure to dairy and their ability to capitalise on current drivers of economic activity – tourism, horticulture and construction.

Regional Roundup - 19 May 2016
Weakness in dairy, strength in tourism and other services, and construction activity continue to dominate regional outlook, with low interest rates for longer now also having an impact.

Regional Roundup - 23 February 2016
Our quarterly Regional Roundup examines the recent fortunes of each region in New Zealand, and their outlook for the year ahead.

Regional Roundup - 10 November 2015
Three stories are driving regional economic fortunes – dairy, impending drought, and construction and housing activity.

Consumer & Economic Confidence