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


Housing, utilities and food prices squeeze beneficiaries

Housing, household utilities and food prices squeeze beneficiaries the most in 2Q

to editor
By Rebecca Howard

July 27 (BusinessDesk) - Beneficiaries were the hardest hit by inflation in the second quarter of the year due to higher prices for housing, household utilities and food, while overall prices continued to dip for top earners, Stats NZ said.

Overall costs for beneficiaries rose 0.3 percent in the June 2017 quarter, compared with the March quarter, according to Statistics New Zealand. Households in the highest earning group, however, saw their cost of living fall 0.1 percent, Stats NZ said. The agency began publishing the quarterly data in November last year to provide new insights into inflation experienced by 13 different groups including beneficiaries, Maori, pensioners and others based on their income and spending patterns.

"Rising prices for the basics such as rent, electricity, and food had a greater impact on beneficiaries," prices senior manager Jason Attewell said. "Over half their spending was on these essentials, compared with about a quarter for the highest earners."

It noted that in the June 2017 quarter, higher prices for vegetables and electricity had a large effect on all groups but this was countered by lower prices for petrol. High spenders benefitted the most from cheaper domestic airfares, Stats NZ said.

On an annual basis, living costs for low-spending households and for beneficiaries rose 2.0 percent while it rose 1.4 percent for the highest-expenditure household group, Stats NZ said. It noted that high spending households spent proportionally more on high-tech items, which had price falls for the year.

"Technology generally improves for items such as smartphones. This reflected as an effective price fall, as consumers receive more value for the same price. Mid to high earners and spenders have more discretionary income for high-tech items and receive the most benefit from these improvements," Stats NZ said.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


By May 2018: Wider, Earlier Microbead Ban

The sale and manufacture of wash-off products containing plastic microbeads will be banned in New Zealand earlier than previously expected, Associate Environment Minister Scott Simpson announced today. More>>


Snail-ier Mail: NZ Post To Ditch FastPost

New Zealand Post customers will see a change to how they can send priority mail from 1 January 2018. The FastPost service will no longer be available from this date. More>>


Property Institute: English Backs Of Debt To Income Plan

Property Institute of New Zealand Chief Executive Ashley Church is applauding today’s decision, by Prime Minister Bill English, to take Debt-to-income ratios off the table as a tool available to the Reserve Bank. More>>


Divesting: NZ Super Fund Shifts Passive Equities To Low-Carbon

The NZ$35 billion NZ Super Fund’s NZ$14 billion global passive equity portfolio, 40% of the overall Fund, is now low-carbon, the Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation announced today. More>>


Split Decision - Appeal Planned: EPA Allows Taranaki Bight Seabed Mine

The Decision-making Committee, appointed by the Board of the Environmental Protection Authority to decide a marine consent application by Trans-Tasman Resources Ltd, has granted consent, subject to conditions, for the company to mine iron sands off the South Taranaki Bight. More>>