Since the Reserve Bank surprised markets with its shift towards an easing bias, the outlook for interest rates has been a constant source of speculation. But the timing of the shift in stance was curious – in our view, nothing fundamental had changed, and the Reserve Bank is sending out the entire fire brigade to rescue a kitten from a tree.
Our work in the news
Our economists are approachable and able to give commentary on a wide range of economic issues affecting New Zealand.
We enjoy sharing our views and welcome opportunities to speak with the media. If you’d like Infometrics to comment on a media story please email Brad Olsen or call our office +64 4 909 7612 to speak with one of the team.
Sign up to our monthly newsletter to get the latest commentary and articles on economic issues that matter in the New Zealand economy. Follow us on social media for more regular updates and links to interviews with our economists.
Immigration is a tricky topic when we can’t agree on the numbers, and aside from that is an evergreen political hot potato. Among many legitimate concerns and disagreements, New Zealand has to contend with Islamophobic arguments despite levels of migration being relatively low.
Paul Barkle has been at Infometrics since 2017, juggling both work as an economist and study. Paul works across a wide range of areas at Infometrics and was involved with updating models in our forecasts that were released last week. This month we chat to Paul about a day in the life of an economist: how he came to be an economist and what he sees in the future.
Despite increasing storm clouds and general concern about the New Zealand economy’s prospects, Infometrics’ latest economic forecasts show GDP growth holding up well throughout the next year. The economic consultancy predicts 3.1% growth in the year to June 2020. A recent resurgence in residential building consents, particularly in Auckland, is pivotal to that outcome.
One of the true tests of a society is measured by how it treats its most vulnerable members, particularly the old, the young, the sick, and the disabled. There is a lot of good with New Zealand and New Zealand policy. However, on assisting those unable to provide for themselves, our provisions for people unable to work due to a health condition is an area where we are increasingly failing.
It is not uncommon to be self-employed in New Zealand, with 415,511 or 16.7% of the total workforce currently self-employed. That’s one self-employed worker for every six wage and salaried workers. New Zealand’s self-employment rate is high compared to other small advanced economies and the OECD average.
Infometrics welcomes Merzan Wadia to our team of economists. Merzan’s article “Fall, rise and decline: the story of New Zealand’s self-employment rate” appears in our March 2019 newsletter.
It’s now been three months since Statistics NZ released new migration data based on traveller outcomes rather than intentions. And all we actually know for sure is that no one has any idea what is happening to migration any more. We’d do just as well to estimate next month’s migration figure by playing darts while blindfolded.
Over the last month there have been a range of concerns raised about the diplomatic relationship between New Zealand and China, with the announcement that the 2019 China-New Zealand Year of Tourism launch event has been postponed and government decisions being critical of China setting a foundation for worry.
There is much coverage in the media of housing affordability, frequently expressed as the ratio of median house price to median income. This measure can be extremely misleading as it takes no account of the actual cost of servicing a mortgage, which is much more relevant to most buyers.