New Zealand GDP

New Zealand

New Zealand: GDP grows at the slowest rate in two years in Q1

June 18, 2015

In the first quarter of 2015, GDP increased a seasonally-adjusted 0.2% over the previous quarter, which marked a deceleration over the 0.7% expansion observed in Q4. The print undershot market expectations of a 0.6% expansion and marked a two-year low. Compared to the same quarter of the previous year, GDP increased 2.6% in Q1 (Q4: +3.5% year-on-year).

Q1’s deceleration was mainly driven by steeper contractions in agriculture and mining. Goodsproducing industries increased in Q1 from Q4’s flat growth to a 0.6% rise. Manufacturing industries contracted 0.3% in Q1 (Q4: +0.9% quarter-on-quarter) and construction activities rebounded from Q4’s 0.3% contraction to a 2.4% increase in Q1. Electricity, gas and water decreased 0.5% in Q1 (Q4: -2.7% qoq). Growth in services slowed from 0.9% in Q4 to 0.7% in Q1. Wholesale and public administration, two of the five sub-sectors of the services category, swung from expansion in Q4 to contraction in Q1.

On an expenditure basis, GDP grew 0.1% over the previous period in Q1, which was below Q4’s 1.2% expansion and marked a three-year low. The print reflected weaker performances in both the external sector and domestic demand. Total consumption grew 0.6% over the previous quarter, which was down from Q4’s 0.7%. While private consumption growth mirrored Q4’s 0.7%, government consumption fell from Q4’s 0.6% expansion to a 0.2% rise in Q1. Fixed investment contracted notably by 1.9% in Q1 (Q4: -0.2% qoq). In addition, the external sector deteriorated as exports fell from a 5.9% increase to a 1.5% rise in Q1. Imports grew 1.0% (Q4: +2.8% qoq). Consequently, the external sector’s net contribution to overall economic growth fell from 0.7 percentage points in Q4 to 0.1 percentage points in Q1.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect the economy to grow 2.9% in 2015, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. For 2016, the panel sees the economy expanding 2.5%.

Author:, Economist

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New Zealand GDP Chart

New Zealand GDP Q1 2015

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

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