ANZ Business Outlook Survey says there's 'nothing good to say' about business confidence as it hits the lowest level in over 11 years while increasing numbers of firms intend to reduce staff numbers

ANZ Business Outlook Survey says there's 'nothing good to say' about business confidence as it hits the lowest level in over 11 years while increasing numbers of firms intend to reduce staff numbers

Overall business confidence as measured by ANZ's Business Outlook Survey has plunged to its lowest level since April 2008.

The ANZ economists have summed it up neatly with their headline for the latest release, which simply says: "Business confidence: Nothing good to say about it"

And there isn't.

An already weakening NZ dollar weakened further after the release of the survey results at 1pm on Thursday, falling to US63.2c.

In the survey, the so-called 'headline' business confidence fell another 8 points to -52% in the August ANZ Business Outlook, the lowest since April 2008.

Remember, in 2008 we were getting into the middle of the Global Financial Crisis.

Firms’ expectations for their own activity over the year ahead fell 6 points to -1, the lowest read since April 2009.

Confidence readings in the construction sector improved from the previous month when they were very low, but were still in negative territory.

ANZ's chief economist Sharon Zollner said that most activity indicators fell again in August "to even weaker levels". 

"Employment, investment and export intentions all fell to dismal levels, along with profit expectations.”

Some of the detail included:

·Employment intentions fell 3 points to a net 9% of firms intending to reduce employment, the lowest since mid-2009. Investment intentions fell 4 points to -4. Capacity utilisation lifted 3 points off July’s decade low.

·Profit expectations fell 4 points to a net 20% of respondents expecting profitability to decline, the lowest since mid-2009.

·A net 41% of firms expect it to be tougher to get credit, little changed.

·Pricing intentions fell 3 points to a net 20% of firms expecting to raise prices, despite reported cost pressures lifting 2 points to a net +49%. Inflation expectations fell from 1.81% to 1.70%, the lowest since late 2016.

·Commercial and residential construction intentions bounced but remain negative.

·Export intentions fell 2 points to a net 1% of firms expecting exports to fall. Mid last year it was firmly double-digit positive.

Zollner said there had been some debate about whether the Reserve Bank’s unexpectedly large 50 basis point cut in the Official Cash Rate this month would be positive or negative for confidence and hence business investment and employment.

"Just over a third of this month’s responses were received after the OCR cut (and the surprisingly strong labour market report). There were only small differences in the responses before and after.

“The outlook for the economy appears to be deteriorating further, with firms extremely downbeat despite easier monetary conditions, fairly robust commodity prices, and positive population growth. Whatever the cause, the risk is rising that it becomes self-fulfilling.

“The decline in inflation expectations from 1.8% last month to 1.7% will be of particular concern to the Reserve Bank, with the Governor calling out declining inflation expectations as a key input in their decision to cut the OCR 50bp.”

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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[ Cynical comment removed. This is a serious, proper survey of a hundreds of businesses. You can find details here. Ed ]

Ed - was the comment you removed any more cynical than the two immediately below it?

Might be something to do with how confidence/the graph crashes when the Col wins indicating the answers are politically motivated. e.g. Labour/Col government - bad times ahead, National Government - things are looking up.

Following your comment I had another look at the graph, the business confidence indeed crashes when the new government was elected

What's your point? Is it that business owners are doom and gloom merchants? (DGMs)? Because yes I would tend to agree based on the chart.

The point is less about the fact that they are doomie gloomie, and more about when they became doomie gloomie - right as the COL came into government.

The point is less about the fact that they are doomie gloomie, and more about when they became doomie gloomie - right as the COL came into government.

Talkback radio will be hot on the topic of the gubmint bringing down the economy and animal spirits.

So the question then is are our business owners unable to plan for the business cycle? And as soon as it gets hard its the governments fault?

No that's not the question. Actually it's not time for questions anymore, it's time for answers, from the government

Everyone ignores that this govt. blew up oil exploration without so much as an impact report. Add to that an unending series of bungled policies coupled to vapid but showy PR opportunities and its no surprise business owners are concerned about the countries direction. Its a government that exudes negligence.

Yes lets re-elect National ASAP so they can clean up the mess they created by basing their policy on short term gain, long term pain. I say they should take responsibility for where we find ourselves. Let’s do this National.

Are you saying that if National were back in government tomorrow, business confidence would be fine again and risks of recession would be minimal - life all good type scenario? If so, watch out Jesus, we found ourselves a new form of salvation.

You're the only one taking about National

Ok - then I think when pressed for answers you want, Adern should start all comments with ‘At the end of the day’ then make up some meaningless rabble about significant economic problems that will cause future pain are really just things we should be celebrating. Repeat for 9 years.

"At the end of the day it is what it is and I'm pretty comfortable with that. And people will see that SNAPPER!"

What's changed in the last 3 months for business confidence to go from stable to grim? A lot of air time has been given to ANZ's less than favorable affairs with the RBNZ revoking the accreditation of their internal capital modelling, lack of disclosure around a certain property transaction and more recently bail conditions applied to suspected money launderers barring them specifically from ANZ.

Apologies for the cynicism, I cannot resist questioning the integrity of the Business Confidence Survey released by a bank that severely lacks in it's own ethics. Sounds more like a side show than a serious, proper survey.

What's changed in the last 3 months for business confidence to go from stable to grim?

Perhaps a firmer grip on and understanding of reality

A lot of things have changed in the last 3 months, many of them nothing to do with the government .
-The trade war has become more entrenched, and the international climate has generally soured.
-OCR has been cut sharply, indicating concerns lying ahead.
- In Auckland, at least, the malaise of the property sector has continued on (Albeit with potentially a green shoot or two). Maybe the longer it continues, the more people worry
- It's become more obvious that potentially stimulatory policies like KB are a total failure
- Some of the bigger construction / infrastructure projects are nearing their end, and there is limited pipeline coming through
- Fonterra's horrid results came through
- Tourism numbers are dipping

I thought NZ was immune and different.

I wonder if the $20 Billion profit per year (including $5 billion profit a year from 4 OZ owned Banks including ANZ) may be the straw that has broke the camels back.

Profits follow the owners of the shares, NZ has sold its soul to Foreign Investors, along with the fruits of its labour.

the scale is huge, $20 Billion to Foreign Owners represents about 40 years worth of Fonterra annual profits, and remember Fonterra is our largest NZ owned company.

So what NZ companies are going to make up the other 39 years worth of profits being removed in 2019. ?

I'm sure Sir John Key can help us out on that one.

We have a feel good inclusive government so nothing to worry about. Jacinda will look after us.

Safe hands.... she's practicing her next I feel sorry for you look in the mirror.

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Like JK she's a great front person.
Sadly, I think she has even less substance than JK.

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That's a big call.

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Morally, I think she has more substance.
In terms of real world know-how and nous, he does.

I think you're spot on Fritz

He's got a good record in forex trading, yeah. So that counts...

A big part of his financial career related to management and leadership. Very relevant to a PM role.

Fair enough.

I do wish it had equipped him to carry out the actions he campaigned on. Wasn't enough, apparently.

In terms of real world know-how and nous, he does

Does that mean he knows how to play the populism game better?

See above. He had substantial experience in management and leadership.
Ardern had minimal experience in that area before becoming PM ,and I think it is showing.
I would suggest that is very relevant real world experience.

Note - as people will know, I am not a big JK fan. Just pointing out the obvious.

He had substantial experience in management and leadership.

At Merrill Lynch, yes.

Did Merrill Lynch have any involvement in the GFC? So leadership and management in a business that was highly successful and did good for society? Positive or negative leadership/management experience would you say?

Would come down to the wire between those two!

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... less substance than the Jolly Kid ... surely you jest ... this government has just rolled out a plan to feed one meal per day to 22 000 primary school children .. what's not to like about that ....

If successful , the programme could be rolled out to include high school students , the universities . .. grey power ... dammit , think big Gummy .... all of us ... the entire population of NZ being fed a meal a day at the governments expense . .. yummy ....

Anyone care to imagine what will be served up ... lotsa Greens I reckon ...

Government Cheese.

one way to boost fonterrables sales , chocky milk for breakfast

Pork?

Damn. At a certain point sentiment drives the markets, really feels like dark days are coming.

Do you have a link for that claim?

Sentiment is critical in all markets.

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No surprises at all. I've been calling a significant deterioration in confidence and the economy for more than 9 months. My optimism dropped markedly when I started to see Kiwibuild failing abysmally.

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Business confidence is low because the COL has no business acumen at all!
Jacinda is great at the “look at me” but when it comes to anything beneficial for the country, she is totally missing in that department.
How on earth can anyone think she knows what she is talking about, when she states that Phil Twyford has a great job with the housing portfolio and KiwiFlop?
She stated that it was going to be the most transparent government of all time and yet it is totally the opposite.
She never answers questions and just fobs it off and moves her head all around.
Totally lost and out of her depth and needs to be gone!!

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How about the last crowd , bring back knighthoods and waste millions on a flag, much better

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You could easily be describing John Key with most of the comments above.

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..get your head out of political blame game. This is a global issue, primarily based on factors beyond the control of any govt. You do yourself no favors with such child like commentary.

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Indeed, it's nothing but talkback ranting to fail to recognise the ponzi economics behind the last decade, the reliance on massive immigration for nominal GDP growth while failing to address productivity, the reliance on foreign money inflows and money laundering, and the lack of a real economic plan.

New Zealand is now facing the prospect of those chickens coming home to roost, while the world faces the prospect of silly monetary policy failing to deliver, and the idea that a recession cannot be put off indefinitely through financial magic.

But for the Gospel According to Leighton Hosking crowd, it's all Jacinda the Communist's fault!

I skimmed a Hosking rant in the Herald today, it was hilarious as he was advocating the idea that his views on things are grounded in rationality and logic.
Quite the comedian

Think I read the same article - wasted 2min of my life I’ll never get back.

Mike’s just mad that he can’t get on state owned TV anymore. Notice how there’s no paywall on his Herald stuff, giving him a mass audience, while more reasoned opinion is paywalled, cutting down the eyeballs drastically?

Central Banking deserves the bash. More dangerous than standing armies.

Or perhaps our business owners have no acumen at all - or does the government run your business for you? (which wouldn't suprise me as most business appear to be dependent upon increasing debt).

Good point. Some of our biggest companies such as Air NZ, Fletchers and Fonterra have near stranglehold on the NZ scene but are struggling. Just how good are our business leaders in preparing for a rainy day?
Personally I think they are doing a terrible job looking after their companies. Now looking after themselves....

In my experience many mid to large scale companies in NZ have real issues. Lack of creativity insight and true strategic thinking is common as is an inherent conservatism and complacency.

On the other hand I think there are plenty of small businesses who are quite the opposite.

The economy would be no different currently even if National was in power. Outside influences such as Trump’s tweets, the USA/China trade battle, Brexit, economies all over the world retracting and a general lack of confidence are all contributing to our economy slowing down. As a result interest rates are being cut by reserve banks in an attempt to give oxygen to struggling businesses and individuals. Having sold a business on 1April 2019 I am pleased to have achieved the sale. Company reps I still talk to say retail has never been as bad as it currently is. Many of us are scared to buy big ticket items unless we really have to. I wonder whether National might even be pleased they are not in power. They did not leave Labour a strong economy. They let house prices get too high in places such as Auckland. People felt rich and spent some of that unearned wealth. When house prices reverse as they currently are doing in such areas as Auckland and Christchurch people slow down their spending on big ticket items. They still buy those coffees though and who can blame them when times are getting tougher.

When I started reading your comment, I was expecting you to sneak in a comment on the Christchurch housing market. Sure enough!

Where's The Man 2?

If in fact he does own any property and if he does I suspect they are as is where is properties no one else wanted to buy, he will be busy working on them so he can sell them before they go back in value any more. I spoke to a company representative who lives in Christchurch earlier this week. He confirmed Christchurch is pretty low in moral at present as they had a few decent ones recently. He also confirmed people are continuing to leave for good and that there are a lot of empty homes around the place looking for buyers and tenants.

I left Christchurch 3 years ago with full support of my then (and still current) employer, relocated to the Wellington branch. I wasn’t replaced, and neither was our external sales rep when he left 18 months ago.

We still get business out of Christchurch, but there’s not enough down there to justify boots on the ground. And any of the business we do get is hard work because nobody down there has a clue.

Amen to that..

ALERT : Weakest Since Great Recession. Hold on to your socks.

What "great recession" do you mean 1929?

One look at the banner on the website and you'd see that it mentions 2008, or the title on the article mentions 11 years.. The Great Recession of 2008, not the Depression of 1929.

Except that there was no great depression in 2008...

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You are aware that recession and depression are different words?

Outside of New Zealand and Australia the Global Financial Crisis is pretty much always referred to as the Great Recession.

Sorry, I thought Interest was a NZ business site

New Zealand did suffer a recession in 2008. Whether you want to call it "great" or not, it met the definition of a recession.

Pretty good, not sure about great.

They sound very similar, in fact indistinguishable when your head is buried in ___ ____.

Thanks for the link JeyLiner, may I point out that your link shows NZ in the 0 to -2% not a "great" recession by any means

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Can we please clarify who the doom and gloom merchants (DGM's) are in NZ? It would appear that its the business owners (like our landlord friends) - is this correct?

Time to update the BEFU....
TWI - 71.18, Treasury BEFU assumption 'The trade-weighted exchange rate index rises from 73.7 in the June quarter of 2019 to 74.1 in the 2022/23 fiscal year.'
WTI - 55.62 Treasury BEFU assumption 'The price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) oil is stable at US$60 per barrel across the forecast period.'

If you look into the methedology behind this survey it is completely trash.

1. The survey is opt in only: even more, you actually have to ask to be a part of the survey. So only those with strong feelings will be taking part. Hence the blatant political bias.

2. Even worse: there is no vetting! Anyone can sign up for this survey, with a made up company. Bullshit you say? Go test it, I have.

3. The sample is statistically insignificant: there are 500,000+ businesses in NZ. This survey is of a few hundred. Less than point one of a percent of the total.

So an unrepresentative, unvetted, tiny, sample. Completely worthless.

The fact that NZ journalism continues to use this survey is nuts.

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Not really. The results of this survey have a reasonable correlation to future economic growth outcomes. It's not perfect (nothing is) but it is a reasonable predictor. Therefore it has earned its stripes to be part of the converstation.

.. dare we look to history to guide us ... business confidence is always lower during Labour led governments than during the reign of the Gnats .. regardless the quality or not of each political party at the time ...

I was of the understanding that this survey had zero correlation with economic performance. Fairly sure I read that somewhere. However I am willing to be proved wrong. Do you have a link/source?

There are certainly international headwinds coming up but NZ can't do anything about these. We need to concentrate on what NZ can do to improve things. Time for the government to step up.

So are you saying government can control business cycles? And are we saying that the National government in 2008 should have prevented the GFC? And are we saying that the National government didn't benefit from the explosion of debt that made the economy appear so strong while they were in power?

I'm saying the government needs to step up to give businesses confidence by doing things like:
- not banning a huge industry overnight (oil)
- not increasing a business's wages by 31% in 4 years (minimum wage form $15.75 to $20)
- deliver on promises made (in the year of delivery), think KiwiBuild, CGT, child poverty, Immigration, homelessness, Pike mine…
- start a large fiscal stimulus by spending on infrastructure, roads and more

- Not canceling a road that didn't have a viable business case but was being built anyway for businesses who very much wanted it?

There may be a degree of worry from business owners that a left-leaning government cannot be counted on to coddle.

Agree they need to start investing in infrastructure. They were elected in part to address the infrastructural deficit.

Generally agree, although I think the minimum wage increase is fair enough, on fairness grounds.
Sometimes there's just some things business need to do, including paying people reasonably.
If they can't do that, maybe they just shouldn't be in business.

So in terms of Corporate Social Responsibility, it would appear the government is doing the right thing as its moving to look after the people and the planet - but this doesn't sit well with the business owners as they are just focused on profit? Is this the argument your making?

So you like changing the subject and asking insiduous questions, is that what you're doing? Do you like asking questions? Does it mean you never answer questions? Does that mean you don't get anything done?
Hey I'm getting pretty good at your game, would you say I'm getting good at your game???

- Being open and transparent

Everyone remembers the GFC as a near term event. If another global finance ponzi falls over anywhere, business has its hand positioned ready to pull on the hand brake - hard. Businesses will fail, people will default on loans and mortgages. Best place to be is low debt, safe income and no cash in the bank for potential haircut. Non anuity services and discretionary retail better be prepared for decimation.

All good for the ponzi finance and do nothing investment market (housing, US bubble stocks) . Any one for a cup of Hot Brexit, Trade war, with a side Dousche Bank share tank, or approaching default in Argentina. Keep calm, borrow more. TUI.

Just an alternative thought:

Being highly indebted and having that debt as cash-in-the-bank might be the way to go ( Offsetting balances in other words)?
You'll want to have the resources to take advantage of the economic route that about to descend on us all, and being able to borrow into a Depression will be nigh impossible ( best to get it done now, if not before) Besides, if there's one commodity that is vastly undervalued at the moment it's - cash. The days of the mandated 'eternal' inflationary destruction of its value may have come to an end as Deflationary forces sweep the Globe. Besides, what's the worst that can happen? The bank quarantines your cash to either forcibly repay debt, or it swaps your cash deposits for bank equity (OBR in other words)
In either of those eventualities, it's Game Over for our economic order, and no matter what you have, it will be 'worthless' - even gold ( as it's denominated in currency terms)

"Besides, what's the worst that can happen? The bank quarantines your cash to either forcibly repay debt, or it swaps your cash deposits for bank equity (OBR in other words)"

Nope, the worst that can happen is the bank fails, your cash disappears, but your loan remains an "asset" and is on-sold. This is definitely a possible scenario. Even with a deposit guarantee, that only kicks in when the bank finally folds - possibly OBR has already happened at this point.

As for gold, if banks start freezing assets and credit and cash dry up completely, I'd bet gold would become pretty useful, and pretty quickly.

I have too much work and I don't want to add more people for when the work drops off. My confidence is reasonable but not negative. With what's happening globally I can't imagine anyone being exceedingly positive right now.

Maybe Labour has succeeded in it's goals despite external issues. So congratulations Labour.
http://media2.s-nbcnews.com/j/msnbc/Components/ArtAndPhoto-Fronts/COVER/...

It's hard to say how much the dip since August 2017 has been down to the government.
I, for one, however am of the growing view that there must be a significant relationship there.
There was a decent pick up in February 2018, maybe new year / summer optimism, but also perhaps some degree of optimism around what were seemingly some large scale government initiatives like Kiwibuild... which have of course fallen flat.

Do you believe in the business cycle Fritz?

What I believe is that economies are highly complex *things* that are subject to a huge range of factors.
There are certainly cyclical factors. But then there are also things like international crises, natural disasters, poor governance and policy etc etc.

Cycles are general patterns, but they can be readily disrupted.

So if there were a foreign crisis that triggered a recession in NZ, would that be this governments fault?

Answer - no. But I'm not at all clear what your point is.
MY point is a range of factors affect an economy.
Government is only one of many actors that has an influence.

Obviously there are plenty of things the government can't control. On the other hand, governments can clearly do things
to help dig economies out of the mud.

As a business owner we are very defensive. We will not be opening the purse strings anytime soon. I have zilch confidence in the current rabble running this country. No amount of spruiking by Orr, or tinkering with interest rates will alter our course. Whist Jacinda is off on her climate change “nuclear” moment, more and more kiwis will become disengaged with her government, and her support will continue to fall. She, and Robertson, (whom I note is extremely quiet?) need to focus on the macro economic picture, and start showing some leadership. All I see is distraction...or smoke and mirrors.

A very intelligent and very successful man who is a friend of my father had met Robertson a few times before he became Minister in a Labour-led government.
The gent told me very strongly that he thought Robertson was mediocre.

He would be correct.

Have you considered that the hyped up ‘Rock Star’ allowed its fame go to its head, partied too much and now has a hangover that may only get worse with time. A new manager took over to tidy things up, but it was too late - the promising performer was no more. If only it was managed a little better earlier, drank a little less, and refined itself more instead of parting on drugs (debt), oh perhaps things could have been better. Do you blame the current or past manager?

With all due respect “what a load of crap”

I guess we'll see what happens over the next few years - but it would appear that those who thought things were great (i.e. the benefactors of the Rockstar) are now turning pessimistic.

Hi Kane, what is your line of business?

DP

Well I take my hat off to Winston Peters, I never realised he was such a great economic forecaster. What he predicted at the election appears to be coming to fruition. What was his plan to get the economy moving again?

regional blah blah investment blah blah

Business owners of all people should have better control of their emotions. When the world hands you lemons, sell lemonade.

One of the areas I thought this government could make genuine inroads into was housing and urban development. Well it turns out they've been really underwhelming.
Just been reading the discussion document on the proposed 'National Policy Statement - Urban Development'. Full of loads of wishy washy policies.
What happened to Twyford's bold statements of getting rid of Auckland's Rural Urban Boundary???
Seems like he's chickening out, or finding it a bit harder than he hinted at???

Epic failure.

They are building crap loads of houses near us in Mt Roskill. It’s pretty impressive, I’m not sure why they didn’t market it more.

state houses or kiwiblah? Or both?

https://mtroskilldevelopment.co.nz/

1/3rd state houses
1/3rd Kiwibuild and long term rentals (owed by whom??)
1/3rd to be sold on the open market acordding to the Roskill south page.

B-b-b-b-b-but Pragmatist, thoooose houses were already earmarked to be built. Phil Twyyyyford has just chucked a "Kiwiflop" sticker on it. Either that, or it was probably National's idea from 9 years ago. Or something.

You'd be right: https://www.beehive.govt.nz/release/govt-build-34000-new-houses-auckland (Amy Adam was housing minister, announced may 2017 under the National Govt)

I'm not giving any credit to Twyford for it, I doubt he had much if anything positive to do with it. We just need to be thankful he hasn't managed to foul it up.

Here's a question for you and others.
Why can't the government build a few massive apartment complexes in 2-3 locations. Sell some as leasehold, and others as freehold.
On the freehold ones, include no profit markup, and exempt from GST. Could then build and sell 2 bed apartments for circa 450K (150K less than market value), 3 bed apartments for circa 550K (150-200K less than market value). Leasehold for less.
Could do a few thousand in 2-3 years, and done efficiently in a few big complexes (rather than hundreds of tiny developments everywhere)
Would stimulate the economy and create jobs, and address the housing shortage, in one fell swoop.
What am I missing here????

It wouldn't accomplish any of what you're saying because it would eliminate all the private development. Nobody can compete with the government selling at a loss.

Indeed, but the govt shouldn't be selling them, just building them, and moving everyone receiving accommodation supplement into them. That'll leave a lot of rundown ex-rentals on the market for the developers to do their thing with, and options for would-be FHBs.

But maybe not Massive apartment blocks, many smaller apartment blocks scattered throughout the community would be better.

Putting a whole lot of state houses in one block inevitably leads to high crime gang dominated areas that prevents people from pulling themselves or their kids out of the mire even if they want to. Council estates in UK and 'the projects' in USA stand testament to the failure of this approach. Also, no sensible private purchaser wants anything to do with ownership near state housing.

Best approach is to sprinkle state housing as widely as possible amongst private homes to spread the load of antisocial activities associated with state housing and provide a more aspirational community to help socialise them and their children.

To an extent, I live a couple streets away from the area Jimbo was talking about, where they demolished a bunch of state houses and are building all these new houses. There wasn't/isnt a gang problem in the area.
As for no sensible owner wanting anything to do with living near state housing.. all the people that brought houses in this area when housing corp was selling them off obviously disagree.

Why would it eliminate private development? The development I mention is at the low-medium end of the price point spectrum, that doesn't compete with the mid-high or high.
Also, evidence is showing that the mid end is generally not feasible anyway in the private development sector. That's a key reason why Kiwibuild is failing.
Tell me how the market can deliver on the massive demand for low-mid to mid range housing?

The market can deliver on mid and low range by just continuing to build high range. Rich people move into the new builds, thus no longer bidding up prices of old builds. Those old builds then become more affordable.

If you look for 2-bed apartments, right in the city centre, you will find there's actually plenty in the 450k price range.

3 beds are definitely hard to find, even at what you cite as the market value. But I suspect that would be because it is a niche market. 3 beds are for families and families here are still in the mindset that their kids need a yard to play in (as though you can play Fortnite in a yard), so nobody's building 3 bedroom apartments.

The problem with that is that far too often they don't sell the old house, they just rent it out/AirBnB it or landbank it. We need to build more houses, at the lower price points (whether that is lower rental prices or sales price is mostly irrelevant, both have eventually the same effect).

Raising a family in the city centre? Not a great idea, where are the decent parks and playgrounds.. Albert park and Myers park aren't great. I agree that most people that think they "need" a lawn are fooling themselves, the only reason i'm only considering places with a lawn is we want pets, and not a handbag doggo or a parakeet.

It's a good idea. Back in the days that government build activity helped turn Fletchers into a large company the government was far more active in boosting housing supply. Leading to NZ's once high home ownership rate, built off the back of the resulting affordability.

ANZ still has credibility to trot out such reports ? Surprised much..

My family and myself went to the States in July for a holiday. When we arrived we were working on each dollar being spent costing us around $1.50NZ. Now you can work on it costing you close to $1.60. We are a poor nation and we are getting poorer. We already pay too much for food , clothes, cars, petrol and utilities in NZ. With the dollar depreciating they are going to cost more. Time to batten down the hatches and accumulate some cash.

There is not really a lot to be happy about. And business owners are not getting the free lunch they pay for it. It's so wrong.

 "net 9% of firms intending to reduce employment, the lowest since mid-2009."

Some employers are looking at cutting costs and employees.

How many of those employees in Auckland with jobs at risk in an economic downturn are in a double income household that is highly leveraged with high debt service to income ratios? Those households that have stretched household budgets to purchase a house in Auckland in the last 2-3 years could be vulnerable. That includes property investors that have purchased negatively geared properties in the last 2-3 years.

Hear that Chorus is talking about a restructuring, so there are potential job losses there.
https://www.odt.co.nz/business/500-chorus-staff-called-consultation-meet...

Some recent others:

1) Sky also wrote-off $38m on the cancellation of a decoder upgrade in favour of a focus on apps and streaming, a $6m content write-off as some shows were deemed surplus to requirements in a more streaming-focussed world, and a $5m charge for redundancies. - https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=122...

2) Air New Zealand's programme to carve out overhead costs has already led to redundancies from its head office, weeks before consultants deliver their final review of its operations.
The airline will not specify how many positions have already been lost or will go in the review. But overseas consultants are concentrating on making savings among about 2000 non-union and non-customer-facing positions. When the review was announced, it was aimed at making 5% savings. - https://www.odt.co.nz/business/staff-cut-air-nz-review

3) A South Canterbury leather company has confirmed that 32 jobs are going as market distortions cause tough trading conditions in the industry. - https://www.stuff.co.nz/timaru-herald/news/114665892/timaru-leather-comp...