Well, we told you so. The Nats lied for weeks that a credit rating downgrade would be imposed on us if we didn’t cut contributions to the SuperFund. We didn’t fall for that for a minute.
Even before the Budget, we pointed out that, except for the extraordinary conditions of the last two years, managed funds provide better returns than risk-free government debt. We pointed out that if ever there was a time for a long-term investor like the government to be buying assets, it’s now. It’s grown 16% since February.
Papers released under the OIA to Radio New Zealand show Treasury agreed with us all along:
“It would not help strengthen the overall fiscal position and therefore shouldn’t be seen as a measure to help the credit rating.”
These Treasury papers confirm what the earlier Treasury leak said: keeping the contributions would increase gross debt but would increase assets by more, resulting in lower net debt.
[btw, it would be great to be able to see OIA papers like these rather than rely on a journo’s interpretation of them. OIAs aren’t made available to the general public on a website or something after being given to the requester, are they? If not, they should be.]