A new report from economic consultancy Infometrics highlights the stark divide in wellbeing between urban and rural New Zealand. Regional Wellbeing marks the first attempt to comprehensively report on wellbeing at a local level around New Zealand. It covers 30 indicators and draws from Infometrics’ online Regional Wellbeing Framework.
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Fixing New Zealand’s housing affordability crisis was one of Labour’s key policy goals going into the last two elections. But KiwiBuild has been conspicuously absent from the government’s vocabulary in recent months, and yesterday’s Budget was no different. The government might not have given up trying to improve housing affordability, but it seems to have realised that KiwiBuild is not the answer to the problem.
Today’s Wellbeing Budget is a significant departure from previous budgets. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has laid out an ambitious spending plan for the economy based around the government’s five wellbeing priorities. The test will be how achievable this plan is.
All eyes are on wellbeing this week, as Finance Minister Grant Robertson unveils the world’s first wellbeing budget. But the Government has been quiet as to wellbeing differs across New Zealand. At Infometrics we thought this was a massive gap that needed to be filled, so we developed a Regional Wellbeing Framework. This article outlines introduces our Regional Wellbeing Framework and provides a teaser to our forthcoming regional wellbeing report that will be released on 11 June.
New Zealand’s labour market remains tight, with unemployment at 4.2% and businesses finding it difficult to source workers. At the same time, employment growth has slowed, and the Reserve Bank has stated that, in its view, “employment is near its maximum sustainable level”.
Carl Hodder has only been with Infometrics for a short time, but already he’s making an impact. He is our new Data Analyst and works in all areas of the business with responsibility for the data pipeline.
He is also involved in the development and delivery of our product offerings and takes a keen interest in enhancing the client experience.
The Treasury hit headlines a month or two back when considering ‘sun and moon feelings’. While sun and moon feelings did not meet our criteria in when developing the Infometrics regional wellbeing framework, we thought it would be fun to shine the line sunshine hours to see what area came up trumps.
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.
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.