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Recent releases

Surprise lift in terms of trade index The terms of trade index rose 0.3% in the June quarter, as lower import prices more than offset modest declines to export prices. Although the index’s rise surprised markets, we had previously signalled that the full effects of tumbling dairy prices won’t begin to be felt until the September quarter due to lags between when contracts are signed and goods are delivered. Read more

Bumpy ride upwards for non-residential building Although July non-residential building consent values slid from their June levels they remained highly elevated, and in seasonally adjusted terms there was $444m of activity in the month. With the consenting of rebuilding work in Canterbury picking up pace, we are likely to see consent values remain strong over the coming months. Read more

Commentary

Mixed messages for New Zealand’s outlook Over the past year New Zealand has experienced a strong lift in economic activity along with a corresponding improvement in labour market conditions. However, the persistence of this rate of economic expansion has been called into question as the price of a number of commodities (especially dairy products) has tumbled. This all begs the question, is the decline in exporter returns about to undermine strong growth in New Zealand, or is elevated net migration and the Canterbury rebuild enough to keep it going?
Predicting population growth in the regions Anticipatingfuture population growth is crucial for local councils to adequately plan forthe provision of services and to anticipate the future rates base. There arenumerous factors which influence the future population of regions including howmuch new land is opened up for development, its attractiveness for retirees andits economic prospects.  Read more.

August 2014 monthly Although most indicators were extremely strong in July, question marks have begun to be raised about how much more gas the New Zealand economic upturn has left in the tank. These concerns are being raised because of sharp declines to dairy and forestry prices, which are likely to weigh on economic activity in provincial centres. Read more.

Latest Forecasts

Venturing out of the shadows

The New Zealand economy has well and truly proven it is undead, recording three consecutive quarters of growth above 1.0% for the first time since 2003/04. Strong growth is set to continue over the next two years as domestic demand remains buoyant, the Canterbury rebuild reaches its peak, and export incomes hold at relatively high levels.