New Zealand economic growth just smashed expectations

Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images

New Zealand GDP exceeded expectations in final quarter of 2015 with the economy growing 0.9% in seasonally adjusted chain-volume terms.

The figure, unchanged from the growth rate recorded in the September quarter, easily beat expectations for an increase of 0.6%.

Despite the quarterly beat, the average annual growth rate slowed to 2.5%, below the upwardly revised 3.0% pace of the prior quarter. It was slightly ahead of forecasts for an increase of 2.4%.

From the same quarter last year the economy grew by 2.3%, above the 2.0% level expected. At current prices, New Zealand GDP was worth NZ$246 billion as at the end of 2015.

According to Statistics New Zealand, the huge quarterly beat was driven by strength in the services sectors, helping to overcome weak performances from the agricultural and manufacturing sectors.

“The service industries grew 0.8% overall,” said Gary Dunnet, Statistics New Zealand national accounts senior manager. “Business services in particular, posted a strong increase, as well as retail trade and accommodation. The strong performance of the service industries was offset by falls in the agriculture and manufacturing sectors.”

The infographic below, supplied by Statistics New Zealand, reveals the internal contributions to the headline GDP figure by sector.

The huge upside beat has seen the New Zealand dollar extend its gain this morning, rocketing to as high as .6780 against the US dollar. It is currently trading at .6757, up 2.8% from Wednesday’s session low.

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