Economic Development Update September 2015

Business Whanganui Newsletter

October, 2015


Welcome to the October edition of our monthly newsletter. Please use the highlighted red areas to navigate to different sections of the news letter and use the links  ” (Top)” to get back to the top of this newsletter.

Treasury confirms a slow down in the national economy however it is expected that the easing of monetary conditions will support the pickup in growth.

Please view our traffic light system for a snapshot of the current economy.  In October the trend still continues stable.

With continued improvement in house sales volumes sales of new vehicles  are trending down with a decline recorded in September, building consents  have again shown moderate growth in numbers with values still down. Electronic Cardsales were buoyant showing a positive trend very similar to August. The tourism results  are still showing strong signs of recovery with sustained positive growth and a positive medium term outlook for the local economy.
Statistics New Zealand have reported and increase of 340 jobs in Whanganui over a 12 month period.

Free seminars on offer by the IRD are a great way to understand IRD business obligations if you know anyone who would benefit from these please pass this on as there is plenty of room for more to attend.

Celebrate business Success with the Whanganui Chamber of Commerce have you got tickets to the 2015 Business Shout Out?

If you are interested in more detail or would like a copy of this newsletter as a PDF file or any suggestions/additions please let me know. Please remember to join  us on our Whanganui and Partners Facebook page to keep up with what is happening on a regular basis we like to be liked as well!

Chris Heywood

Source WDC Jan 15

New Zealand Economy

  • GDP growth in the June quarter rose a softer than expected 0.4%. The underlying pace of growth slowed markedly over the first half of 2015.
  • Treasury expects an around trend pace of growth over the second half of 2015 (i.e. around 0.6% a quarter).
  • Further declines in business sentiment and consumer confidence across the September quarter show that risks to the near-term outlook are to the downside.
  • That said, monetary conditions have continued to ease and this will support a pick-up in growth further out.

Key economic data releases over the past month showed that economic activity rose a softer-than-expected 0.4% in the June quarter, following the 0.2% rise in the March quarter. Growth slowed significantly from 2014 with sub-trend growth being reflected in increasing spare capacity as evidenced by the unemployment rate rising and weak non-tradables inflation. We expect annual growth to be around trend of 0.6% a quarter (or 2.5% per year) over the second half of 2015. Given the low growth recorded in the first half ofthis year, growth in the December quarter of 2015 from a year ago may fall below 2%.

Read the full report here….

NZ House sales (Top)

Auckland, Northland and Waikato/Bay of Plenty Driving Real Estate Market in September

• 8,174 dwellings sold throughout New Zealand in September 2015, up 38.3% on September 2014 and up 5.3% on August 2015
• A new national record median priced of $484,650, up $64,650 (+15.4%) on September 2014 and up 4.2% on August 2015
• The national median price, excluding Auckland, up $28,000 (+8.3%) to a new record of $365,000 compared with September 2014 and up 4.7% on August 2015
• A rise of $156,000 (+25.4%) for Auckland’s median price, from September 2014 to September 2015 — from $615,000 to $771,000, and a $31,000 (+4.2%) rise compared with August 2015
• New record median prices also for Waikato/Bay of Plenty and Otago
• A 143% rise in the number of sales over $1 million between September 2014 and September 2015 — from 428 to 1,042
• Record number of auction sales at 2,311, with sales by auction reaching more than 50% of total sales in Auckland for the first time

REINZ, announced today that there were 8,174 dwelling sales nationwide in September 2015, up 38.3% on September 2014 and up 5.3% on the previous month, August.
The national median price was $484,650 for September, an increase of $64,650 or 15.4% on September 2014, to reach a new record high, and up 4.2% compared with August. Excluding the impact of the Auckland region, the national median price rose $28,000 to $365,000 compared with September 2014 also to reach a new record high, and rose 4.7% compared with August. New record median prices were also reached in Auckland, Waikato/Bay of Plenty and Otago.

Read the Full report here…

source REINZ

NZ Retail Card Spend (Top)

Retail card sales for New Zealand have shown improved growth over yet again for the same period last year the only exceptions being apparel, fuel and appliances. Fuel sales still recorded a negative growth as fuel prices continue to fluctuate the trend is expected to normalise in the medium term.
Top Categories were takeaways, food retailing and bars cafes and restaurants.
Source Marketview

NZ New Vehicle Sales (Top)
New Vehicle sales in New Zealand have continued to grow and in recent months the 12 month moving average growth has increased at a lower rate from 0.7% to 0.5%. In September 2014 a total of 8 382 new cars were sold and in September 2015 the figure was 8 835.The new car market has remained strong for the month.

Source MIA 

Local Economy

Whanganui and Region House sales (Top)

Manawatu/Whanganui Region Trends
Sales volumes rose 21% compared to September 2014, with sales rising 65% in Levin, 23% in Palmerston North and 14% in Whanganui. Compared to August sales volumes increased 2%, with sales rising 52% in Feilding, 13% in Palmerston North, but falling across the rest of the region.
The median price across the region rose $20,000 (+9%) compared to September 2014, with prices rising 19% in Palmerston North, 16% in Feilding and 11% in Manawatu Country. Compared to August the median price rose $25,000 (+12%), with prices rising 21% in Feilding and 12% in Palmerston North.
The number of days to sell improved by 12 days compared to August, from 50 days in August to 38 days in September. Compared to September 2014 the number of days to sell improved by 11 days. Over the past 10 years the median number of days to sell across the Manawatu/Whanganui region in September has averaged 45 days.
It was noted that, “First home buyers are increasingly active, with lower interest rates encouraging more enquiry and purchases. Demand under $350,000 is very strong with limited stock available and multiple offers common. Overall listings are down more than 10%.”


Whanganui Card Spend(Top)
The retail card spend in Whanganui was once again positive. The top 3 categories are once again the same as the previous month. Wanganui was the 2nd top performing region yet again second only to Ruapehu which comes off a low base.
Overall the electronic card data is still positive.
Top 3 sectors were
  1. Bars cafes and restaurants
  2. Hardware and Homeware
  3. Takeaways

The bottom three sectors were

  1. Fuel (Lower pump prices)
  2. Apparel (flat and affected by changed market dynamics)
  3. Accommodation (not a always a good measure)
Card spend comparison by region monthly growth over previous year 

Source Market View
Card spend comparison by region month growth over previous year

The results for individual councils across the region were again mixed this month, with strongest Ruapehu again at 7.1% increase ahead of Whanganui which recorded a growth of 3.3% and Palmerston North at 2.4% increase. Tararua District declined at -0.5%.  Wanganui once again  increased at a higher rate than the National growth  of 2.6%.
Source Market View

Whanganui New Vehicle Sales (Top)
In September new car sales were once again in decline which reinforced the negative trend on the 12 month moving average. There was a sharp decline on the previous year with 48 Vehicles sold in September 2015 compared to 65 new vehicles sold in September 2014. Car sales continue to fluctuate however the overall trend has tended to move from flat to decline with a negative growth on the 12 month moving average showing a -2.4% growth.

Source MIA

Building Consents – Whanganui (Top)

In September there were 66 Building Consent applications. Based on a 12 month moving average we have yet again seen growth.

Source Wanganui District Council

Job Growth – Whanganui (Top)The region achieved employment growth of 1.1% between 2014 and 2015, the second consecutive year of job growth. 


The below table shows the annual percentage change across the Whanganui region – the 2.1% for Whanganui equates to an increase of 340 jobs between 2014 and 2015.

Source: Stats New Zealand
Whanganui’s growth is second only to Manawatu to district which has a low base.

Tourism (Top)

Guest nights are still trending up in Whanganui with August showing solid growth over the previous year.  For the month of August 2015 compared to 12 months to August 2014 we saw a 6.63 % increase in total guest nights in Whanganui.
Source-Stats NZ


Whanganui Chamber of Commerce
2015 Business Shout Out Dinner
Have you booked your place yet ? Why not join the Chamber of Commerce’s Business Shout Out Dinner next Saturday 07 November at the Hatrick Raceway ? This is a great event when the Chamber of Commerce Acknowledges Whanganui Business Excellence withguest speaker CEO of Auckland Chamber Michael Barnett. This event will be a true celebration of Business in Whanganui.
Please RSVP to Raewyn or Anita at


Introduction to Business Seminars
GST Workshops

The IRD will be presenting a number of seminars about Starting a business as well as GST workshops , if you know somone who is starting a business or you would like a refresher then this is well worth attending.
These seminars are free of charge you just need to book your place.

Introduction to business seminars

  • Working smarter with the IRD online services
  • business structures
  • income tax
  • expenses you can claim
  • good bookkeeping tips
  • GST and more
  • 17 November 2015
GST Workshops
  • what is GST
  • GST registration
  • record keeping – cash book
  • basic adjustments
  • GST Filing
  • IRD online service
  • using IRD’s interactive Tool for business
  • Available again next year..
Where all workshops and seminars are held at :
CLAW Whanganui
76 Guyton Street

Booking is essential

ph 0800 377 774
For further information visit their web site

Tender Notifications(Top)

No Tender Notices currently available

For any further assistance, please contact the Tenders and Contracts Secretary, Lana Treen, at or on 06 349 3105.