February has been a big month for the Infometrics team, with updates to our Economic, Building, and Transport Forecasts in early February, and a pending update to the Quarterly Economic Monitor (with December 2023 quarter data) due on 29 February.

In this month's newsletter Chief Forecaster Gareth Kiernan examines some of the economic trends in our latest forecasts, highlighting the importance for business leaders examining some of the key trends influencing economic outcomes.

Chief Product Innovation Andrew Whiteford explores data from the recently published 2023 Infometrics Regional Economic Profile to discuss the knowledge economy and what is driving its recent growth.

Migration is one of the hottest topics on people's minds right now and this topic is covered twice in this month's newsletter. Gareth discusses the impact of migration on New Zealand's economy in our Forecast Media Release, and Principal Economist Brad Olsen examines what the boom in population growth looks like in the Chart of the Month.

Making sense of the conflicting signals across the economy
Supermarket shopping
There are currently a lot of moving parts to New Zealand’s economic outlook, as we consider prospects throughout 2024 and into 2025. The challenges to forecasting are nowhere near as pronounced as they were during the Covid-19 pandemic, when the expectations and outcomes were, literally, off the charts. Instead, there are conflicting pressures and signals making it difficult to know which influence will ultimately prevail – conditions that are typical when the economy is at a turning point.
What is driving New Zealand’s knowledge economy?
Lightbulb on pinboard
The knowledge economy matters because it drives innovation and productivity growth and is the engine of sophisticated economies. Knowledge industries also help improve our wellbeing through better healthcare, and they nurture the next generation by providing them with new skills through education and training. In this article I draw on data from the recently published 2023 Infometrics Regional Economic Profile and investigate the growth of knowledge intensive employment in New Zealand. The analysis details which parts of the economy have contributed most to knowledge intensive growth, and which regions lead the pack in knowledge intensity.
Media Release: Migration boosts spending and confidence around NZ’s growth outlook
Auckland International Airport Arrivals Jan 2024
New Zealand’s economic prospects are brightening, according to Infometrics’ latest forecasts. GDP growth is predicted to average 2.0%pa during 2024 and 2025, which represents a substantial upward revision from the 1.2%pa growth that was being forecast by Infometrics in October last year. This more positive outlook is underpinned by continued high net migration that is set to take longer to retreat from its current record level. Improving business confidence will also lead to more positive outcomes for business investment spending.
Chart of the Month: Fastest population growth since 1946
Plane-Wellington-Airport-February-2024
Migration has become a hot topic over the last year, with a record high net migration gain. This large inflow of people into New Zealand has seen the population increase by 145,000 people once births and deaths are accounted for – slightly more than adding an additional Dunedin over the last year.
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