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New Market Study Published: New Zealand Business Forecast Report Q3 2012

Fast Market Research recommends "New Zealand Business Forecast Report Q3 2012" from Business Monitor International, now available


Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 08/03/2012 -- Core Views With households still in the midst of deleveraging and weakening external conditions, New Zealand's real GDP growth is likely to remain very weak in 2012, and our 1.7% forecast is below consensus expectations of 2.1%. More painful cutbacks will be necessary, but as the domestic savings rate rises, the country's vulnerability to external shocks will decline in line with a strengthened net exports outlook. The interest rate cutting cycle, while had been on hold for Q112, is not yet over and will likely to resume in Q2. Debt deleveraging will continue to undermine money supply growth, which should turn negative in H212, reducing consumer price inflation to an average of 2.5% in 2012. New Zealand will see its 40-year run of current account deficits come to an end by 2013 as foreign investors become increasingly reluctant to finance New Zealand's imports as the domestic economy slows. A strong trade surplus, assisted by a weakening currency, will aid this process and will allow the country to gradually pay back its huge external liabilities, reducing vulnerability to external shocks. The re-election of John Key and his New Zealand National Party is an all-around positive for New Zealand's economy and business environment. Pro-saving policies will be further developed, helping the country to become less vulnerable to external shocks over the long term. We have upgraded New Zealand's short-term political risk rating from 82.3 to 85.2 owing to improvements in the 'policymaking process' and 'policy continuity' categories. Major Forecast Changes We have downgraded our outlook for New Zealand fiscal balance and expect it to only return to surplus in FY2015/16, although we have maintained our forecast of a 7.7% deficit in FY2011/12. Moreover, with the government's recent efforts to implement expenditure cuts over the coming years, which should see net debt hit a peak of 32.0% by 2014. Key Risks To Outlook The most pertinent risk comes from a banking crisis in neighbouring Australia, which would likely spread to New Zealand given the external borrowing of local banks. While not our core view, this could trigger a severe debt deflation spiral on the island. Another related risk comes from a global recession, brought about by a recession in the US and potentially China. This would hit the price of New Zealand's export commodities and corporate profits. On the positive side, there is a risk that further interest rate cuts by the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and Reserve Bank of Australia, could trigger a revival of the housing market, similar to what was seen in Australia in 2009. This poses upside risks to our weak growth forecast. Business

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