The roll-out of vaccines both in New Zealand and around the world is providing light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel, but the coming year will still be a challenging one for the New Zealand economy, according to Infometrics’ latest forecasts.
The New Zealand economy has entered 2021 on a strong footing, having dodged a missile last year from COVID-19, according to Infometrics’ latest forecasts. The massive fiscal and monetary stimulus put in place last year, combined with our good public health outcomes, has limited the number of job losses, boosted the housing market and construction activity, and underpinned a strong rebound in economic activity after lockdown.
New Zealand’s successful public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic should not be taken to mean our economic struggles are over, according to Infometrics’ latest forecasts. Given that life has largely returned to “normal” at Alert Level 1, economic outcomes in the near-term will be better than initially feared. However, the full effects of the border closures, business failures, and job losses will only become apparent over the next 18 months.
The New Zealand economy faces up to two years of consolidation following the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Infometrics’ latest forecasts released last week. Even with massive government intervention to cushion the downturn and stimulate a recovery, there is no way the economy can quickly and completely bounce back from the restrictions currently in place. Instead, the structural changes the New Zealand economy is undergoing will establish a new “normal” operating environment for businesses.
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Infometrics’ latest forecasts suggest there is little reason to be feeling more upbeat about New Zealand’s economic prospects, despite some improvement in confidence surveys over the last few months. The company expects growth to regain some momentum over the next year, but it believes nothing has changed to help the economy avoid mediocre results beyond 2021.
A whopping $138 billion of infrastructure spending is planned across New Zealand over the next 10 years, according to the latest Infometrics Infrastructure Pipeline Profile . Updated in early November, the Profile shows planned infrastructure spending is expected to be roughly $9b higher than our previous estimate from September 2018.
New Zealand’s housing market isn’t functioning as well as it should be, with higher house prices, rising rents, falling home ownership, and a lack of housing options. But just how large is the housing shortage that we continually hear about?
The global economic slowdown will continue to be a drag on New Zealand’s economy over the next year, according to Infometrics’ latest forecasts. Escalating tariffs as a result of the trade war between the US and China have seen global growth expectations steadily downgraded. China, New Zealand’s largest export market and the major engine of the global economy over the last decade, is growing at its slowest rate in 30 years. All these factors mean that next year the world economy could record its slowest growth since 2012.
The latest Infometrics forecasts reinforce that New Zealand is expected to experience a period of softer growth over the next few years. With many businesses and boards currently reviewing their strategic plans and priorities for the coming years we thought it useful to briefly highlight some of the key current economic insights that decision makers need to be aware of.