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Farm Input Prices Rise 0.3 Percent

Farm Expenses Price Index: March 2004 quarter — 25 May 2004

Farm Input Prices Rise 0.3 Percent

The Farm Expenses Price Index (FEPI) rose 0.3 percent in the March 2004 quarter, according to Statistics New Zealand. In the year from the March 2003 quarter to the March 2004 quarter, the FEPI fell 1.4 percent.

The most significant upward contribution to the rise in the FEPI in the latest quarter came from the repairs, maintenance and motor vehicle repairs index, which rose 1.2 percent on the back of higher material and labour costs. Other upward contributions came from a 1.1 percent rise in the index for interest rates, and a 0.6 percent rise in the livestock purchases index. Prior to this quarter's increase, the livestock purchases index had recorded six consecutive quarterly decreases.

A 1.1 percent fall in the fertiliser, lime and seeds index was the only significant downward influence on the FEPI in the March 2004 quarter. Respondents cited the appreciation of the exchange rate as the driving factor behind the movement in this index. The FEPI excluding livestock rose 0.4 percent in the March 2004 quarter. Brian Pink Government Statistician

ENDS

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