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

 

Kiwi Wellbeing Stands Strong Against Global Turmoil

Despite a rocky second half of 2019, with geopolitical uncertainty and a slowing global economy, New Zealanders’ wellbeing held up at a similar level as in the previous BNZ Wellbeing Report six months earlier (66.9 vs 67.2).

BNZ Economist Paul Conway says, “New Zealanders appear to be a resilient bunch with the glass generally half-full even with things being a bit of a mess out there in the world.

“Overall wellbeing decreased ever so slightly in the second half of 2019 but was largely unchanged throughout the year. The relatively strong sense of wellbeing is despite increased concern about the New Zealand and global economies over the second half 2019.

“In the latter half of 2019 we had a slump in business and consumer confidence and a slight deceleration in economic growth. Internationally, uncertainty was through the roof with rising tensions between the US and China, Brexit and the UK political situation, as well as downgrades in the global economic outlook.

“But Kiwi wellbeing essentially held up. This suggests Kiwis recognise the impact and importance of what’s going on in the world, but don’t let it ruin their day,” says Conway.

Want higher wellbeing? Get out of the city

Demographics, location and financial situation affect wellbeing, with men, older people, home owners, and those living in rural areas reporting relatively high wellbeing.

Paul Conway says, “The urban-rural divide is real when it comes to wellbeing, with people living in rural areas reporting higher wellbeing than city dwellers. This suggests that notwithstanding the excitement of city living, long commutes, congestion and noise can detract from wellbeing.

“No matter where you live though, financial stress has a significant bearing on wellbeing, with higher-income households, not surprisingly, tending to have higher levels of happiness and lower anxiety.

“Worries about money drag on wellbeing measures – not having enough money for an emergency is the most common form of financial hardship, and more than half of New Zealanders worry they won’t have enough wealth to afford their desired standard of living in retirement.

“Women, younger people and people living in relatively low-income households are especially prone to financial stresses. While financial stress is all too common in New Zealand, some people living with financial stress can still enjoy reasonable wellbeing,” says Conway.

Lack of trusted advisors when it comes to money matters

Across all three estimates of BNZ’s Wellbeing indicator, New Zealanders have responded to financial hardship in largely much the same ways.

“Following a stricter budget and cutting out unnecessary expenses is the first thing New Zealanders tell us they try. Personal sacrifice, selling possessions and working harder are also relatively common. Talking over financial worries with friends and family is also common.

“However, less than five per cent of hardship events lead to a conversation with a bank or a financial advisor. Good quality advice can help people respond to these events more effectively and even help avoid repeats in the future, so it’s concerning to see such a small number of people seeking this out.

“Banks and financial advisors of all kinds have the skills and tools to help people through difficult times, so there’s clearly more than can be done right across the industry to help lift this number,” says Conway.

The BNZ Wellbeing Report is produced every six months, based on research conducted in November and December 2019 across a sample of around 1500 people.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

National: National Backs Businesses With $10k JobStart

National will provide a $10,000 cash payment to businesses that hire additional staff as part of our commitment to keeping New Zealanders in jobs, National Party Leader Todd Muller and Finance spokesperson Paul Goldsmith have announced. Our JobStart ... More>>

ALSO:

DIY Law: Government Exempts Some Home Improvements From Costly Consents

Homeowners, builders and DIYers will soon have an easier time making basic home improvements as the Government scraps the need for consents for low-risk building work such as sleep-outs, sheds and carports – allowing the construction sector ... More>>

ALSO:

Media Awards: The New Zealand Herald Named Newspaper Of The Year, Website Of The Year At Voyager Media Awards

The New Zealand Herald has been labelled a “powerhouse news operation” as it claims the two biggest prizes – Newspaper of the Year and Website of the Year – along with many individual awards at the 2020 Voyager Media Awards Website of the ... More>>

ALSO:

ASB Bank: ASB Takes The Lead Again With New Low Home Loan Interest Rate

ASB has moved again to support its customers, cutting a number of home loan rates, including the two-year special rate to a new low of 2.69% p.a. Craig Sims, ASB executive general manager Retail Banking says the reduced rate will be welcome news for many ... More>>

ALSO:

Nathan Hoturoa Gray: The Problems With Testing And Case Statistics For Covid-19

To begin to understand disease transmission in a country requires adequate testing of your population with properly vetted, accurate tests. As the world struggles to find what 'adequate percentage' of the population is necessary, (estimates predict ... More>>

ALSO:

RNZ: Fletcher Building To Lay Off 1000 Staff In New Zealand

The construction company will cut around 10 percent of its workforce as it struggles with the fallout from Covid-19. More>>

ALSO:

Can Pay, Won't Pay: Cashflow Moves Urged

Government Ministers are asking significant private enterprises to adopt prompt payment practices in line with the state sector, as a way to improve cashflow for small businesses. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Why We Should Legally Protect The Right To Work From Home

For understandable reasons, the media messaging around Level Two has been all about “freedom” and “celebration”, but this is not necessarily going to be a universal experience. When it comes to workplace relations, Level Two is just as likely to ... More>>

ALSO:



Auckland Airport: Thousands Of Kiwis Travelling For Queen’s Birthday Weekend


Confidence in domestic travel is beginning to steadily ramp up, with thousands of Kiwis travelling within New Zealand for Queen’s Birthday.
Nearly 400 flights will be operating to and from Auckland Airport over the long weekend... More>>

ALSO:

Science Media Centre: Understanding 5G Concerns – Expert Q&A


Recent attacks on cell phone towers have brought concerns over the rollout of 5G technology into sharp relief.
While scientific research has consistently shown that the technology does not adversely affect human health, public concerns about its impact have spread around the world, fueled in part by growing misinformation online. The SMC asked experts to comment... More>>

ALSO:


Trade: Record Monthly Surplus As Imports Dive

Imports in April 2020 had their biggest fall since October 2009, resulting in a monthly trade surplus of $1.3 billion, Stats NZ said today. “This is the largest monthly trade surplus on record and the annual goods trade deficit is the lowest ... More>>

ALSO:


Media Blues: Stuff Chief Executive Buys Company For $1

Stuff chief executive Sinead Boucher has purchased Stuff from its Australian owners Nine Entertainment for $1.
The chief executive was returning the company to New Zealand ownership, with the sale is expected to be completed by 31 May.
"Our plan is to transition the ownership of Stuff to give staff a direct stake in the business as shareholders," Boucher said in a statement.... More>>

ALSO:

RNZ: Bar Reopening Night 'much, Much Quieter'

Pubs and bars are reporting a sluggish first day back after the lockdown, with the fear of going out, or perhaps the joy of staying home, thought to be a reason for the low numbers. More>>

ALSO:

Stats NZ: New Zealand’s Population Passes 5 Million

New Zealand's resident population provisionally reached 5 million in March 2020, Stats NZ said today. More>>

NIWA: Seven Weeks Of Clearing The Air Provides Huge Benefits: Scientist

Seven weeks of lockdown has provided evidence of how pollution can vanish overnight with benefits for the environment and individuals, says NIWA air quality scientist Dr Ian Longley. Dr Longley has been monitoring air quality in Auckland, Wellington ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: Milestone In Cash Flow Support To SMEs

A significant package of tax reforms will be pushed through all stages in Parliament today to throw a cash flow lifeline to small businesses. More>>

ALSO: