New Zealand GDP Q4 2015

New Zealand

New Zealand: Economy maintains pace of expansion in last quarter of 2015 and beats expectations

March 16, 2016

In the final quarter of 2015, GDP increased a seasonally-adjusted 0.9% over the previous quarter, which matched the 0.9% expansion registered in the previous quarter and overshot the 0.7% rise the markets had expected. Compared to the same quarter of the previous year, New Zealand’s GDP expanded 2.3% in Q4 (Q3: +2.3% year-on-year) and brought the economy to expand 2.5% in 2015 as a whole.

Looking the economic sectors, the agricultural sector deteriorated further in the last quarter of 2015. It decreased 1.6% in Q4 (Q3: -0.4% quarter-on-quarter), which marked the steepest contraction in two years as the sharp fall in commodities prices—particularly in dairy products—last year took a heavy toll on the sector. Industry increased a timid 0.3% in Q4, which was a third of 0.9% growth rate observed in Q3. Weak growth in the industrial sector reflected the fact that strong activity in construction more than compensated for a contraction in manufacturing. Services virtually maintained the pace of growth in Q4, supported by healthy growth in financial services.

On an expenditure basis, GDP increased 1.1%, which came in below the 1.4% rise tallied in Q3. Q4’s print showed that both private consumption (Q4: +1.1% qoq; Q3: +0.8% qoq) and government spending (Q4: +0.4% qoq); Q3: +0.3% qoq) gained momentum toward the end of 2015. That said, fixed investment swung from a 2.6% increase in Q3 to a 1.1% contraction in Q4. On the external front, the contribution from net exports fell in Q4 as exports slowed sharply compared to the previous quarter, while imports rebounded.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect the economy to grow 2.9% in 2016, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. For 2017, the panel sees the economy expanding 2.5%.

Author:, Senior Economist

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New Zealand GDP Chart

New Zealand GDP Q4 2015

Note: Quarter-on-quarter changes of seasonally adjusted GDP in %.
Source: Statistics New Zealand and FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast.

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