Sharechat Logo

NZ employment confidence turns positive, just, for first time since September 2011

Tuesday 2nd April 2013

Text too small?

New Zealand households' employment confidence turned positive for the first time since the third quarter of 2011, as Canterbury and Auckland dragged up an otherwise gloomy nation.

The Westpac McDermott Miller Employment Confidence Index rose to 100.7 in the first quarter from 99.1 three months earlier on a scale where 100 separates optimists from pessimists.

Employment data is being keenly watched after the household labour force survey for the final three months of 2012 showed the participation rate fell to the lowest level since September 2004, while employment shrank, casting doubt on the strength of the economic recovery. Today's survey results mark the fourth quarterly improvement in a row though the labour market remains subdued.

"Households' job optimism is inching up," said Westpac economist Dominick Stephens. "The fact that it's once again on a modest uptrend suggests that we may see the jobs market firming a little this year."

Households now feel safer in their own jobs, with a net 14 percent expecting it to improve in the next 12 months, up from 3 percent in the December quarter. Yet a net 56 percent said jobs are hard to get a net 12 percent expect job opportunities to reduce over the coming year, a deterioration from the net 6 percent who saw worse times ahead in the previous survey.

A net 24 percent of households said their wages had improved over the past 12 months though those expecting an increase in the year ahead fell back slightly to 33 percent.

Canterbury remained the most upbeat region, with employment confidence edging up to 113.6 from 113.5, while Auckland showed a marked improvement, up to 104.1 from 96.9.

In Wellington, sentiment turned negative, falling to 97.4 from 101.1. Northland confidence fell to 94.5 from 96.3 while in the Waikato, confidence improved to 96.2 from 95.8. Bay of Plenty confidence rose to 93.9 from 92.5 and Gisborne/Hawke's Bay fell to 95.8 from 96.

Confidence in Taranaki/Manawatu-Whanganui weakened to 96.3 from 97.6. In the South Island, Nelson/Marlborough/West Coast improved to 98.3 from 96.7 while Otago fell to 88.8, the worst result in the survey, from 94.4 and Southland dropped to 95.2 from 97.5.

BusinessDesk.co.nz

Bond Offer: Infratil Ltd, 7.2 year & 10.2 year unsecured unsubordinated bond


  General Finance Advertising    

Comments from our readers

No comments yet

Add your comment:
Your name:
Your email:
Not displayed to the public
Comment:
Comments to Sharechat go through an approval process. Comments which are defamatory, abusive or in some way deemed inappropriate will not be approved. It is allowable to use some form of non-de-plume for your name, however we recommend real email addresses are used. Comments from free email addresses such as Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail, etc may not be approved.

Related News:

NZ dollar eases as market eyes pending GDP data
Evolve shareholders demand answers
Strong tourism, low rates keep lid on NZ current account deficit
Refining NZ margins jump to 18-month high
Goodman opts for underwritten $150m placement to raise capital
Kathmandu shares rise 9.3% on strong FY result, solid US performance
FMA seeks greater powers from the government
Goodman opts for underwritten $150m placement to raise capital
NZ dollar opens higher as dairy prices lift, oil eases
Napster's Sean Parker yet to seek OIO approval for Weta Digital stake

IRG See IRG research reports