We look back on a big, successful year and reveal our most popular stories; announce expanded coverage for 2017

We look back on a big, successful year and reveal our most popular stories; announce expanded coverage for 2017

2016 has been another big year for us.

We delivered almost 3,400 original stories from our team of journalists and contributors.

We were visited by more than 1.7 million "unique readers" who dialed up six million sessions reading almost 15 million pages of content.

Actually our 'unique reader' data is by IP address so it probably double counts readers who access our content using multiple devices.

But it is still a good proportion of New Zealand's online adult population and more than half of them came at least once in the year to use our content and resources.

This year has seen another strong rise in Property related content which is perhaps not too surprising given it is the dominant economic sector in our economy. But we also had strong rises in our Bonds and our Insurance section. Our Insurance coverage was award winning in 2016. (Jenee Tibshraeny won the ICNZ award for her overall coverage, and Diana Clement was runner up for her investigation of the issues at Youi in the same awards. ICNZ were brave to make these awards because our coverage was not always positive to ICNZ members, so that shows real maturity for ICNZ.)

You also might find that reading our site on your mobile device is now a little easier. I would love some feedback on how this works for you.

We appreciate your support of our live-and-free service, and we wish everyone Happy Holidays and good weather where ever you are.

Although most of our staff are taking a break as well, we will have daily updates and some unique content in our regular style.

International financial markets may get 'interesting' in January and we will be covering that and what it means for New Zealand.

And we will be back in 2017 with our full team, which will include new columnists, and will see the return of the talented Alex Tarrant who until December was a senior reporter of big business deals in London. He will be back in Wellington full time for us in 2017, expanding our coverage in election year.

In the meantime, here are the fifteen stories that readers read the most in 2016:

#15. Our February report signaling clampdowns that will affect the appetite for Auckland housing by offshore Chinese buyers

#14. Our late November report of major changes in the outcomes at Auckland housing auctions

#13. Greg Ninness's November opinion that the Auckland housing market is at a major turning point

#12. Our March Home Loan Affordability report

#11. Jenee Tibshraeny's interview with Martin Hawes on how to make money from money rather than property

#10. One of Bernard Hickey's assessments of whether you should fix or float

#9. Our live blog of the results in the US presidential election

#8. Our April report of fast rising house prices (despite low sales volumes)

#7. Our Feburary report signaling a sharp fall-off in real estate sales volumes

#6. Greg Ninness's interview with Olly Newland warning of serious issues in the Auckland housing market

#5. Our report on ANZ's tightening of lending criteria for property investors

#4. Bernard Hickey's report on the paper by Peter Philips and Ryan Greenwood-McGrevy on Auckland's housing bubble

#3. Bernard Hickey's report on the RBNZ clampdown on investor LVR limits

#2. Diana Clement's followup on the Youi issues

#1. Diana Clement's detailed investigation of insurer Youi's very questionable business practices

To be in our top 15, a story had to be read almost 8,500 times. Our top story was read more than 33,000 times.

Interestingly, our #1 story for 2016 was only our 16th most popular page. It was well below the 576,000 people who used our mortgage rate page over the year (and the total views were much more than that of course because readers kept coming back for updates).

Enjoy your holiday break. See you again in 2017.

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?

We welcome your comments below. If you are not already registered, please register to comment.

Remember we welcome robust, respectful and insightful debate. We don't welcome abusive or defamatory comments and will de-register those repeatedly making such comments. Our current comment policy is here.


Interesting to go back and read the news in February 2015 when in January house prices dropped then the April news when in March the prices Rocketed up again.

More of the same in 2017 with houses rocketing up again in February March be it a lighter rocket just into space not the moon on this flight.

Really Ted do you think that life if that simple. You have to take in to account cause an effect, so when you took your trip down memory lane, did you see why property prices had dropped from Oct 15 to Jan 16??

Well lets look at what happened in Oct 2015 for the NZ property market, yes that's it, the IRD requirements for Overseas Investors and hay presto our property market dropped by -8%, as foreign buyers had to madly scramble around registering for IRD numbers.

This time it's not so simple, its not like a fashion cycle you know, there are much bigger forces at play. So now we have the 'Trump Effect' which is having a large part to play in causing one of our main Overseas Property Investors i.e. China, to belt tighten and clamp down on 'Capital flight'.

China is trying to avoid a currency crisis as the RMB has been consistently sliding to an eight and a half year low and analysts are predicting a further slide by the time Trump takes office next month. How long this will continue for no body knows, What we do know is that Mr Trump isn't particularly fond of China.

Economists have been proven wrong so many times about the fundamental economics of housing and its trajectory.

History does repeat as immigration is at all time highs listings are low in Auckland if you compare the metrics.

pity history is starting to repeat elseware and bubbles are starting to deflate, but auckland will be ok because that is different

Everyone takes a hiding sometime.
Investing in housing is no different.
It will bounce back.

It said prices were going to go up! I'll take that hiding.

Dream on Zac your gold haired wig could bite you in the bum without even noticing it.

I was really only making a comment about the article that sharetrader linked to which was uncannily similar to the one we discussed the other day where the headline didn't match the content.
It's nothing to do with me dreaming on. I actually want to see things get a bit stagnant for awhile.

That's ok, I'm just amused about the irony. ;)

Funny sort of bubble deflation though. From the article you linked:

UK house prices may only eke out a modest gain next year as economic growth weakens and a pickup in inflation squeezes consumers.

It forecasts that values will be rising about 1 per cent to 4 per cent in the UK by the end of next year.

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors also sees a slowdown in price growth in 2017.


is it not good that they delate slowly to slow growth than pop, i know which i pefer.
but to wish for double digit growth year on year is just running at the cliff flat out rather than a stroll so you can change direction before anything too bad happens

You wanted feedback for the new layout for mobile devices: I LOVE IT, I can now easily read all articles with bigger font that always fit my screen. AWESOME, Well done !!!

Congrats to everyone at interest.co.nz on the 2016 year. Always like the rural reports too. Glad to hear Alex is on his way back for the 2017 election year. See you then - great site.

Gee a million of those visits would have been from Zachary alone :-P

..and from multiple IP addresses and devices in several different countries too.

Thanks David, it's good to be back. Hello again everyone! Will be reporting from Wellington from the start of February - should be a pretty exciting year. Having a bit of a holiday until then at the second best beach in the world (I think it's #1 but 2nd is alright I guess).

Looking forward to trying to buy a modestly priced, wooden, 1-storey house in the capital that's not at liquifaction or tsunami risk or at the top of a cliff. Any pointers welcome!