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Scrooge English makes way for Miserable Christmas

Scrooge English makes way for Miserable Christmas, Fragile Economy—Peters

The Pre-election opening of the books has shown that households should expect a miserable Christmas, and that the economy is in a very weak position heading into the November election according to New Zealand First Leader, Rt. Hon Winston Peters.

“Treasurer Bill English has managed to turn a $2.5 Billion surplus into a wafer thin one in just 15 months since the Coalition broke up, and has had to play with the books and rely on highly optimistic growth rates to get even that far,” said Mr Peters.

“Growth is very weak, particularly in the export and consumer sectors. Interest rates look set to take another significant hike upwards. The result is that households will continue to feel the squeeze—expect even more businesses to go to the wall and a less than merry Christmas.

“The economy is teetering on the brink and is suffering from very sluggish growth expectations. Mr English has left very little room for movement, and has had to empty out the $100 million contingency fund to get his surplus. New Zealand could probably not survive another Asian crisis or even a small fiscal alteration without significant changes being required.

“Weakness in the domestic market is shown by the fact that the Current Account deficit has taken an enormous hit upwards—it is now 8.3% of GDP. That is a sign of very weak internal investment and is already hurting our export base and currency very hard,” concluded Mr Peters.

Ends

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