Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


NZ official jobless rate overstates labour market woes: RBNZ

NZ official unemployment rate overstates labour market woes, RBNZ says

New Zealand's unemployment rate of 7.3 percent overstates the weakness of the country's labour market, which has been tapering off through the latter half of this year, the Reserve Bank says.

The bank's latest forecast is more downbeat about the level of unemployment over the next two years, but isn't convinced joblessness is at a 13-year high as shown in Statistics New Zealand's household labour force survey - the official barometer.

The HLFS figures were in contrast to those in the Quarterly Employment Survey, falling numbers of unemployment beneficiaries, rising wage inflation and reports that employers are still finding it hard to attract staff.

"Looking at a broad range of measures, momentum in the labour market has weakened somewhat over the end of 2012," the bank said in commentary included in today's three monthly Monetary Policy Statement. "We believe this deterioration is less severe than the HLFS would suggest."

The central bank expects unemployment of 7.1 percent in the March 2013 year, falling to 5.9 percent in 2014 and 4.9 percent in 2015, according to forecasts in the MPS. That's more pessimistic than the 6.4 percent, 5.3 percent and 4.9 percent forecasts in September.

A rising unemployment rate has surprised economists in the past three quarters, with the spike in September attracting scepticism while also pointing to a lull in what seemed a more strongly recovering economy.

Jobs growth in recent years has largely been underpinned by increasing numbers of part-time staff at the expense of full-timers, though the Canterbury rebuild is seen as a likely candidate to mop up spare capacity in the labour market.

"The continued high unemployment rate of the past three years highlights the risk that significant spare capacity remains in the wider economy," the bank said. "Even if the unemployment rate dropped back below 7 percent in the December quarter, the HLFS would still suggest much more economic slack than other capacity indicators."

(BusinessDesk)

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Must Sell 20 Petrol Stations: Z Cleared To Buy Caltex Assets

Z Energy is allowed to buy the Caltex and Challenge! petrol station chains but must sell 19 of its retail sites and one truck-stop, the Commerce Commission has ruled in a split decision that acknowledges possible retail price coordination between fuel retailers occurs in some regions. More>>

ALSO:

Huntly: Genesis Extends Life Of Coal-Fuelled Power Station To 2022

Genesis Energy will keep its two coal and gas-fired units at Huntly Power Station operating until 2022, having previously said they'd be closed by 2018, after wringing a high price from other electricity generators who wanted to keep them as back-up. More>>

ALSO:

Dammed If You Do: Ruataniwha Irrigation Scheme Hits Farmer Uptake Targets

Enough Hawke's Bay farmers have signed up for water from the proposed Ruataniwha Water Storage Scheme for it to go ahead as long as a cornerstone institutional capital investor can be found to back it, its regional council promoter announced. More>>

ALSO:

Reserve Bank: OCR Stays At 2.25%

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler kept the official cash rate at 2.25 percent, in a decision traders had said could go either way, while predicting inflation will pick up as the slump in oil prices washes out of the data and capacity pressures start to build in the economy. More>>

ALSO:

Export Values Down: NZ Posts Biggest Annual Trade Deficit In 7 Years

New Zealand has recorded its biggest annual trade deficit since April 2009, reflecting weaker prices of agricultural commodities such as dairy products, beef and lamb, and increased imports of vehicles and machinery. More>>

ALSO:

Currency Events: NZ's New $5 Note Wins International Banknote Award

New Zealand’s new Brighter Money $5 note has been named Banknote of the Year in a prestigious international competition. The $5 note was awarded the IBNS Banknote of the Year title at the International Bank Note Society’s annual meeting. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news