New Zealand: Business confidence rises to over six-month high
February 27, 2015
Confidence among businesses rose in February, according to the ANZ Bank Business Outlook, which reported that a net 34.4% of businesses surveyed expected better economic conditions in the coming 12 months. The result, which came in above December’s 30.4% (the survey is not conducted in January), represented the best result since July 2014. As a result, business confidence moved further above the 0% threshold that separates optimism from pessimism.
According to ANZ, business confidence rose in 7 of the 14 categories that compose the index. Expectations for the agricultural sector turned positive this month, reflecting higher dairy prices. Sentiment in the construction sector remained strong, even though it moderated slightly. Firms’ expectations for their own activity, which is an even better predictor of economic activity, increased from 37.3 points in December to 40.9 points in February. According to ANZ, February’s print indicates that, “[b]usiness sentiment has started the year with an extremely positive tone. Firms’ own activity expectations, employment and investment intentions are all robust and consistent with the economic expansion rolling on at a hefty clip.”