Welcome to the June edition of our newsletter.
New Zealand Economy
The economy appears to have maintained solid momentum over the first half of the year. Labour demand was very strong in the March quarter but rapid labour force growth led to unemployment rising in the quarter. Robust real wages, along with high migration and tourism inflows, supported retail spending in the March quarter. Costs faced by businesses remain subdued but there are signs of increased price pressures. The OTI goods terms of trade rose in the March quarter and net exports have held up better than expected. On balance, the economy appears to be doing slightly better so far this year than anticipated in the Budget Update.
Read the full report here….
NZ House sales (Top)
- National median house price passes $500,000 for the first time
- Five regions also hit new record median highs New Zealand’s national median house price has reached a new record high, passing the $500,000 mark for the first time to hit $506,000.
- Data gathered by REINZ for May 2016 shows that five regions have also hit record high median sale prices, as the Auckland market holds firm. The Waikato/Bay of Plenty region recorded a record median sale price for the fourth consecutive month, hitting $419,000. Record median prices were also reached in Taranaki ($343,250), Wellington ($465,000), Canterbury/Westland ($435,500) and Central Otago Lakes ($707,250).
- Inventory is falling nationwide, with a 41% decline in properties available for sale year-on-year Auckland’s annual rate of increase in median prim (7.5%) is now well below the national median price increase rate (10%) Auckland was the only region to see an increase in the number of days to sell (32, up 3 days)
Read the Full report here…
NZ Retail Card Spend (Top)
Good retail card spend was experience in May with the apparel sector still under pressure.
Top Categories were takeaways, bars cafes and restaurants and accommodation which has been a consistent trend for number of months.
NZ New Vehicle Sales (Top)
May was yet another good month for new vehicle sales with growth on the same month last year just shy of 10%. There has also been a recovery in the 12 month moving average growth which has moved from 0.1% to 0.7% ove the last three months this is a good indicator of the stability in this sector. In May 2015 a total of 6802 new cars were sold and in May 2016 the figure was once again up to 7 502 . The slowing growth since October has reversed and become positive growth again.
House sales have lead the way in the local economy with yet again good sales recorded once again the local indicators we monitor are still showing positive growth which is good for Whanganui.
Whanganui and Region House sales (Top)
Sales volumes rose 35% compared to May 2015, with sales rising 54% in Levin, 52% in Manawatu Country and 30% in Wanganui. Compared to April sales volumes rose 11%, with sales rising 24% in Levin, 8% in Wanganui and 6% in Palmerston North. On a seasonally adjusted basis sales across the region fell 1%, indicating that the rise in sales in April was about in line with normal.
The median price across the region rose $16,900 (+8%) compared to May 2015 with prices rising 36% in Levin, 17% in Wanganui and 15% in Feilding. Compared to April the median price fell $1,000 (-0.4%), with prices rising 18% in Wanganui, 12% in Levin and 2% in Feilding. On a seasonally adjusted basis the median price increased 1% compared to April.
The number of days to sell improved by one day in May, from 35 days in April to 34 days in May. The number of days to sell improved by 14 days compared to May 2015. Over the past 10 years the average number of days to sell during May for the region has been 53 days. The weeks of inventory in the region has fallen by 18 weeks over the past 12 months to 17 weeks, and by two weeks compared to April.
REINZ Spokesman, Bryan Thomson noted that, “First home buyers continue to be very active in the region, although investors appear to have taken a step back from the market. The number of properties available for sale continues to fall rapidly, with the weeks of inventory falling more than 50% over the past 12 months. Vendor expectations are lifting, albeit slowly.”
The median price trend is now easing, with the volume trend continuing to rise. The days to sell trend is now also rising. The overall trend for the region is now improving.
Whanganui Card Spend(Top)
The top category this month was Appliances with Bars cafes and restaurants still showing continued growth.
Top 3 sectors were
- Hardware and Homeware
- Bars cafes and restaurants
The bottom three sectors were
- Fuel (Lower pump prices- which in effect is a positive)
- Apparel (flat and affected by changed market dynamics)
- Accommodation – This is only reflects card sales and not indicative of tourism which is still growing.
Card spend comparison by region monthly growth over previous year
Source Market View
Card spend comparison by region month growth over previous year
Card spend comparison by region monthly growth over previous year dollar value of goods purchased May 2016.
Source Market View
Whanganui has slipped to 2.8% growth in card sales and now hold 3rd place for growth in the region behind Ruapehu and Rangitikei which are respectively showing growth of 11,9% and 5.4%.
Whanganui New Vehicle Sales (Top)
In May 2016 new vehicle sales showed good growth again with 70 vehicles sold in the month of May 2016 up on the 52 sold in the same month of the previous year pushing the moving average growth to 2.1% there are large fluctuations in sales from month to month but the overall trend is still in positive territory. The trend over the medium term still remains positive in spite of the erratic nature of sales in this sector.
Building Consents – Whanganui (Top)
In May 2016 there were 93 Building Consent applications. Based on a 12 month moving average we have again seen an improvement in number of consents passed at 4% growth with the value of consents still indicating a stable trend in the region of $ 5 million per month on average.
Source Whanganui District Council
In 12 months to April 2016 guest nights were up by 3.5 % which still indicates growth for the 12 month period. We still see signs of recovery with accommodation levels at similar levels to April 2015 which is positive for this sector.