web analytics

Property price decline

Written By: - Date published: 8:30 am, July 13th, 2018 - 61 comments
Categories: australian politics, cost of living, economy, Economy, housing - Tags:

What would happen if the house prices of Auckland, Queenstown, and other centres of very high debt went into substantial and long term decline?

We are seeing big hints of an answer.

The residential property game in New Zealand remains centred on Auckland: as Auckland values skyrocketed, they took that equity and reinvested in the regions. That may tempt less charitable types shouting “schadenfreude to the JAFFAS”. Just leave that for the truly shonky landlords.

So what if there’s no future equity gains to keep those further fresh loans for further properties available? And what happens when the idea that rents will just keep going up disappears as well?

What matters in the broad sense is that the Reserve Bank has tested whether our banks would get into real trouble if this scenario really played out.

The Reserve Bank did go through some really serious scenarios. In the first, a downturn in the Chinese economy spreads through trade channels to other emerging markets, with flow-on effects to other parts of the global economy including Europe and Japan. A collapse in demand for commodity exports and negative investor sentiment towards the Australian and New Zealand economies triggers domestic recessions and a six month closure of offshore funding markets for banks.

Then, New Zealand’s unemployment rate rises quickly to peak at 11%, house prices fall 35%, and the Fonterra dairy payout remains below $5/kgMS for three years.

The scenario assumes that macroeconomic conditions begin to improve by the fourth year, though property prices do not recover. Banks receive a two notch credit rating downgrade, and face elevated costs in both wholesale and retail deposit markets.

The second scenario put a big operational risk or banking industry-wide misconduct event on top of all that hot mess from the first scenario.

Then the Reserve Bank tested how the banks would survive it all.

Apparently they would, but it’s New Zealand society that needs the stress test.

Neighboring signs are not good. The ANZ parent company in Australia has said that the pace of decline in house prices is quite a bit larger than expected, and likely to last longer than forecast. You might want to read that sentence twice.

In New Zealand, the centres of Wellington, Christchurch, Auckland and Queenstown are in decline.

This decline has been noticeable since the last quarter of 2017.

Now, I’m no Cassandra presaging the end of New Zealand real estate capitalism as we know it. Will the New Zealand housing downturn in key centres turn into an inferno that destroys the New Zealand economy? Or can it just gently smoulder at the edges and burn off just the most risky borrowers?

In a policy sense New Zealand desperately needs the second outcome. A big house price calamity that caused mortgage defaults and made consumers shut their wallets would send waves of unemployment through New Zealand. A slow fade, such as several further years of house prices falling slightly, could be pretty useful. The mirage of the perpetual property acquisition by the few would fade. Household debt levels would on average start to level. And in time it might narrow the gap between income earned and house prices to go for, into a bit less cruelly unattainable.

With so little increase in overall New Zealand productivity for so long, the only reliable way most people have got ahead in this country is getting loans on housing and watching the values go up. That whole model is now at risk.

Most will remember times in New Zealand history in which property values have slumped. 2007-8, 1997, 1987, 1974-77, and 1967-69 spring to mind, and the Reserve Bank is across those as well.

In New Zealand’s highly indebted private loan state, property recessions mean that a whole bunch more people find themselves “under water” – where the mortgage is higher than the value of the property. That means the banks start checking those files out and having a chat about whether you can still afford it or whether it’s better that you hand your keys back. That ends in stress, divorce, a smashed credit rating, damaged families, and damaged lives. This particular property decline is slow, and it looks like it’s here for a few years.

We’re not in any crisis yet. Not near either. What matters in the specific sense, is this sustained decline in property value takes with it the hope of mobility and the wealth of most New Zealanders.

61 comments on “Property price decline”

  1. Xanthe 1

    The banks are the problem . solution , they take a haitcut! I suggest 10% debt to be written off by banks per annum until house prices fall to acceptable levels

    • Antoine 1.1

      Meanwhile, in the real world

    • Lara 1.2

      Thinking that idea trough:

      If banks write off debt, that means the people who took out the loans do not need to repay those loans. As they’re written off.

      Which may improve the % of equity they have in the property. And so leave them in a stronger position to borrow again.

      It could most certainly prompt more loans. To buy more property.

      Increasing the amount of $ available to buy property could push up prices.

      Having the opposite effect than the one you intended.

      • One Two 1.2.1

        Banks have debt repackaged and sold on, ad nauseum…they won’t be writing debt off…not consumer retail debt at least…

        Which is why ‘jubilee’ is off the table…permanently…

        One goes…many go with it…

      • UncookedSelachimorpha 1.2.2

        Tax bank profits, use funds to build state housing? That should help?

        I like the idea of the banks actually contributing something, rather than just exploiting everyone.

        • xanthe 1.2.2.1

          Yes Taxing bank profits and putting those taxes into affordable housing is another solution.

      • xanthe 1.2.3

        Laura…Thats NOT thinking it through. The first outcome wouldbe that banks would become very risk averse to lending on unsustainiably priced property.

        As for the increase in owners equity that would be matched by a lower property value so net result would be that owners equity would be nearer to what it would have been without bank induced overpriceing

  2. Blazer 2

    People that bought a home to actually live in will be alright so long as they have a job.

    Developers could take a bath,but usually they use OPM.

    Highly leveraged speculators may find themselves in trouble.Not too many tears for them either.

    And of course the banks…will be fine..the heads we win .tails you lose mentality always prevails.

    Can’t endanger the financial system by allowing banks to fail.

    The Australians have deposit insurance, but here in NZ its a totally different market(yeah right)and depositors here have the OBR haircut to look forward to.

    It will all be the coalition Govts fault.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 2.1

      ;No….people who purchased a home will be alright so long as the government continues to plow taxpayer money into accommodation costs.

      If the extensive subsidies end, so to does the wealth transfer as the housing prices would fall precipitously

  3. Kevin 3

    If you have a job and can comfortably pay your mortgage, why would the bank want to have any sort of ‘chat’ with you in the first place, even if the value of the property is less than the outstanding mortgage?

    • David Mac 3.1

      I guess the first question in that chat would be establishing the existence and amount of cover of the life insurance policies for those servicing the upside down loan. Income insurance? I guess banks could start requesting customers take it on….and guess what, good news, the bank sells it! Ha! Bastards.

      I’d be taking a more active interest when someone owes me $10 on an item worth $8.

  4. David Mac 4

    Our emotions play such an important role in outcomes. Mathematicians can run various scenario outcomes but predicting bankable outcomes is so difficult.

    We are moving out of an extended season of “Buy a house mate, you can’t lose” into a season of Mortgagee Auction signs popping up around our neighbourhoods.

    The ‘Buy a house mate’ advice from Grandads and media pundits is sliding into ‘Keep your powder dry’ mode.

    It’s difficult to make big gains on provincial real estate. It chugs along, great rent return vs mortgage repayments but lousy capital growth, the reverse of Auck etc. The exception I noticed eg: value doubling in 10 years is the mortgagee auction prices of 2007/08 and the selling prices today. The very bottom and very top? of the cycle.

  5. Blazer 5

    I must say whenever these stress tests have been done I’ve yet to see a conclusion along the lines of…the banks will be..fucked!

    • David Mac 5.1

      Yep, the banker never goes broke in Monopoly. No jail, no Community Chest, no Chance, just raking it in and outliving everyone but the last player standing. ‘Cue riding off into the sunset together.

    • AsleepWhileWalking 5.2

      Read Nomi Prins.

      The stress tests are being fudged (and Douche Bank still managed to fail…)

  6. DH 6

    Much of that talk is wildly exaggerrated and misleading. Very few people would go into negative equity if house prices fell 20%. They could fall 30% and still it wouldn’t affect that many.

    Do the maths. If house prices rise 10%, and a person buys a house with a 10% deposit, after 1yr they’d have 20% equity. After 2yrs they’d have 30% equity…etc.

    A sharp fall in house prices would only negatively affect those who bought within the last year or two, and many of those are ‘sell old house/buy new house’ who wouldn’t be affected either.

    • David Mac 6.1

      In light of your thought DH the requirement for larger deposits for investment properties should serve us well. A Mortgagee Auction sign being hammered into the lawn outside your rental is not a pleasant feeling.

      • DH 6.1.1

        Investors typically require a 40% deposit David, they’d only run into trouble if the banks were lending them their (40%) deposit(s) from equity in existing properties.

    • RedLogix 6.2

      It’s true that only very recent buyers are at immediate risk of going under water, but combined with possible interest rate rises the risks rise as Ad details in the OP.

      The one thing he didn’t really mention, is that in a falling market no-one wants to buy. And certainly lenders tend to increase their equity requirements. Instead of the bank looking for 10 or 20% equity, it might be 30.

      Because while the equity gain numbers are very nice thank you in a rising market, they’re brutal in a falling one … especially on first home buyers.

      • Ad 6.2.1

        After a decade we’ve started forgetting how really cold it feels when it hits.

      • DH 6.2.2

        There’s a lot of factors not mentioned RL, one of which is the known lag between rents and house prices. Falling markets are always self correcting. The fall halts when the income from rents becomes sufficient to pay the mortage on a rental property. Old investors make way for new investors.

        Another is the obvious fact that banks have to lend money to make money. It’s not in their interests to engage in mass foreclosures even if mortgagees’ equity does get hammered.

        • RedLogix 6.2.2.1

          Yes there are a mess of factors involved; but the one big joker in the pack will be interest rates. If they climb back up towards 10% or more; it’s all bets off.

          The year after I purchased my first house in 1986 IIRC, my mortgage hit 22%. If I hadn’t gotten a 25% pay rise that year it would have all turned pear-shaped. So yeah .. these things are not impossible.

          • DH 6.2.2.1.1

            Sure it’s a joker in the pack but then it always has been so why would it make things different now? Is there any reason why interest rates might climb to 10%

              • DH

                What’s your point Ad? Your link provides no reasons why interest rates might climb to 10% in the immediate future.

                • Ad

                  The whole point of the post was to show that really weird confluences of stuff happen which can tilt the real estate market faster and deeper than expected.

                  Some of those are tested beforehand by the Reserve Bank.

                  • DH

                    The RBNZ are always conducting worst case modelling, that doesn’t mean its going to happen though does it.

                    Getting back to the argument, I think people get sucked in a bit by what banks say instead of looking at what they actually do. The banks say whatever suits their interests and the RBNZ are the types to fall for it because it’s their business to ensure our banking system survives.

              • dv

                Interestingly DH that graph refers to byAD (66 to 08) show rates with an ‘average’ (by eye) in the 8-10% range over the 40 years!!!

                • Ad

                  True!

                  But it’s the spikes that kill you.

                • DH

                  It’s meaningless in that context though dv, interest rates generally follow inflation and we haven’t had high inflation for quite some time.

            • RedLogix 6.2.2.1.1.2

              Instability, uncertainty, risk, need to recover lost capital from mortgagee sales, etc. The usual reasons. The key point to make, is that if haven’t got much debt, you don’t really care about interest rates, but it’s a different story if you do.

              Government Debt to GDP at around 22% looks manageable, but the household Debt to GDP is over 90%. I’d imagine that’s fairly exposed:

              https://tradingeconomics.com/new-zealand/government-debt-to-gdp

              https://tradingeconomics.com/new-zealand/households-debt-to-gdp

              • DH

                Maybe you’re seeing it from the wrong perspective RL?

                If rising interest rates led to more foreclosures then surely it would be in the banks interests not to increase interest rates. Why would they want to create their own losses?

                • RedLogix

                  The banks in NZ are really only retail outlets; they don’t have much control over the rates that they are charged.

                  • DH

                    Yeah I get that, but banks here do tend to follow the OCR so the local economy has an influence on even the overseas owners.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.3

      If house prices rise 10%, and a person buys a house with a 10% deposit, after 1yr they’d have 20% equity. After 2yrs they’d have 30% equity…etc.

      So, they’re paying off 10% of equity every year and will thus have the loan paid off in ten years?

      Yeah, your maths sux.

      • DH 6.3.1

        I was rounding Draco, don’t nitpick.

        • Draco T Bastard 6.3.1.1

          The problem being that your rounding gives a seriously wrong impression.

          • DH 6.3.1.1.1

            Only to you Draco, most people understand that we’re not going to minutely detail every item in the pursuit of making a point.

            I could point out that my numbers were accurate for a person with a 10yr mortgage but then I’d be nitpicking wouldn’t I.

            • mpledger 6.3.1.1.1.1

              Based on a $100,000 mortgage, interest charged at 6% per anum and compounded monthly, a monthly payment of 1110.21 that pays off the loan in 10 years. The amount paid off after each year is
              year end _______ % of mortgage paid off
              1__________ 7.5
              2__________ 15.5
              3__________ 24.0
              4 __________ 33.0
              5__________ 42.6
              6__________ 52.7
              7__________ 63.5
              8__________ 75.0
              9__________ 87.1
              10__________ 99.99999682

              So, not very close to 10% initially.

      • mikesh 6.3.2

        A rise in equity (capital gain) does not provide cash to make loan repayments.

  7. David Mac 7

    In the past, it seemed to me, other than new entrants, the first to find themselves in trouble had converted equity in their homes into nice things to have: Boats, holidays, grand weddings etc.

  8. Draco T Bastard 8

    So what if there’s no future equity gains to keep those further fresh loans for further properties available?

    The economy crashes as Steve Keen has shown.

    In the first, a downturn in the Chinese economy spreads through trade channels to other emerging markets, with flow-on effects to other parts of the global economy including Europe and Japan.

    Yes, the problem with a country being trade-dependent rather than being able to stand on its own with trade being a ‘nice to have’.

    Now, I’m no Cassandra presaging the end of New Zealand real estate capitalism as we know it. Will the New Zealand housing downturn in key centres turn into an inferno that destroys the New Zealand economy?

    What do you think will happen when the entire economy is based upon an asset bubble caused by too much lending creating too much money and then the bubble pops for several reasons?

    With so little increase in overall New Zealand productivity for so long, the only reliable way most people have got ahead in this country is getting loans on housing and watching the values go up. That whole model is now at risk.

    That’s a model that cannot possibly work. But it’s also capitalism in its entirety as people seek to become rich without actually producing any value.

    And it’s a model that’s fuelled by the private banks being able to create money and loan it out at interest.

    Change the banking system so that private banks can’t create money would be one major step towards actually stabilising the economy. The second part to that is having the government be the sole creator of money which it spends into the economy mostly through a UBI.

    We’d still have to ban foreign ownership and have it so that the purchase of NZ goods and services is solely done in NZ$ (I.e, foreign money cannot come into NZ).

    We’re not in any crisis yet.

    We’re in a crisis and have been for some time. It just hasn’t manifested yet as the government has been able to kick the can down the road time and time again but the weakness is still there. It’s a weakness that is systemic.

  9. Stuart Munro 9

    If prices went down significantly I wouldn’t put it past the government to soften their stance on foreign investors until they firmed – they’re more consistently loyal to investors than citizens.

  10. SPC 10

    Getting ahead by affording to own a home is good and is one reason why Morgan’s party deservedly died.

    Getting rich watching property values going up, not so much. That model was based on inflating land values and cheap finance for speculators – it’s a pyramid scam, requiring immigration. This has high infrastructure costs and results in real decline in funding for health and education (especially with no CGT).

    There is little market risk with a correction in property values of itself (as the government has a supply programme) nor to banks or to owners either, given there is the 20% deposit for recent buyers and those who bought earlier have large equity gains.

    The problem for individuals would be an increase in mortgage rates impacting on ability to pay mortgages or loss of income/employment. But this has always been the case and can occur with illness (income insurance), death if no life insurance and partnership separation.

    I have no problem with an end to an era of owning property as being the path to “mobility” and the “wealth” for New Zealanders. It’s taking home ownership out of the reach of the next generation. Little wonder our productivity performance lags behind the rest of the first world and our homes cost so much to build and are not great quality either.

  11. Bill 11

    A property value crash could be a golden opportunity for the government, instead of bailing out banks re 2008, to shove piles of productive cash into the economy to do such things as retrofit and upgrade existing housing stock (as well as other pieces of infrastructure) in preparation for likely climatic effects that are just around the corner.

    So thinking of such things as increasing the thermal mass of houses and buildings to better withstand more extreme and lengthy heatwaves. High productive investment/low unemployment economic settings. Very Keynesian/social democratic, and so against the grain, I know. But hey…

    And it’s a bit of an aside. But the housing announcement made by Twyford that Ad linked to on Open Mike, good as it is as far as it goes, I do wonder what standard these houses are being built to. And I wonder on the basis that NZ houses I’ve experience of simply aren’t built to cater to long periods of extreme heat. (Neither in terms of thermal mass, nor provision of utilities such as electricity)

    edit – as for people paying mortgages on houses that are no longer worth what they paid, they can always simply turn their house into a home 😉

    • McFlock 11.1

      One of the best ideas I heard re: alternative responses to the GFC was that governments should just have bought the riskier own-home mortgages from the banks on the cheap and simply managed them on a state housing rent-to-own basis. Nobody gets turfed from a home even if they lose their jobs, the banks take a bit of a haircut (but the main problem was the deregulation and outright fraud that motivated the toxic mortgages, because bankers), and the economic damage is nipped in the bud.

  12. Siobhan 12

    Its a little hard to really care even when your on the receiving end of the property/rental market scam ..we live in a world wide system of bubbles and crashes.
    If housing ‘crashed’ the economy would eventually pick itself up again and flick off the ‘losers’ like a bunch of dead fleas and go bounding after the next housing bubble treat.

    The only thing that seems to happen is each and every bursting bubble (housing, commodities etc) seems to help concentrate the wealth into a smaller and smaller pool of people..ie The Obscene Transferal of Obscene Wealth.

    Personally I like to imagine future when owning more than one house or being a Landlord is considered a social faux pas of the highest order.

    • Draco T Bastard 12.1

      Personally I like to imagine future when owning more than one house or being a Landlord is considered a social faux pas of the highest order.

      And where unearned income by rich people is seen as the bludging it is.

  13. Herodotus 13

    Many here fail to recognise, should the construction industry contract, there are such consequences (and not limited to) as:
    Companies fail – dragging down with them many subbies
    Construction activity dramatically decreases as banks reduce credit – as happened in 2008
    Developers without adequate strength in their balance sheet are unable to continue and developments stagnate e.g. 2008
    Much of the 2007-9 manufacturing crisis and its subsequent rise can be attributed to the construction contraction and later boom/expansion that we are currently experiencing.
    Spec building ceases as there is no ability to build and achieve any gains for builders
    So who builds ???
    Many are not old enough to remember the late 80’s (sharemarket crash), 1998 (Asian Crash) and what it was like back then. We were fortunate that the 08 recession was not as savage as the 80’s on our economy and was “relatively” short in duration in its effects.
    https://tradingeconomics.com/new-zealand/building-permits
    And note the issues that have faced Fletchers
    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/bdo/news/article.cfm?c_id=1504111&objectid=12051857

    • Tricledrown 13.1

      This scenario is extremely unlikely especially in Auckland Queenstown
      The back log ie housing shortage will take 10 yrs of maximum capacity to just catch up let alone create an oversupply.
      Unless we have an outflow of migration
      That’s extremely unlikely as well.

      • Graeme 13.1.1

        Haha, wondering how long would take some deluded ” the boom’s going to go on for ever” type came along. That sentiment was rather common around Queenstown in 2007 and is a pretty reliable indicator in my book that the good times are getting very close to the end. y neighbour at that time was one of them, nice property, all the toys, now in reduced circumstances down south, and a lot happier too.

        In Queenstown right now we’re building houses to house people to build houses. See the problem. And most of the tradies that live in those houses are mortgaged to the max.

        I know a self employed sparky with a million dollar mortgage, he’s having to do work for people I wouldn’t go near because I know I wouldn’t get paid at the end of the job. I can’t see it ending well for this guy. A medium sized tits up would clean out quite a few around the town, a good one, and there’s a few contenders, would be devastating.

  14. McFlock 14

    So that’s the impact of an international banking problem.

    What about the impact of simple property price reduction? Let’s say that (for the purposes of discussion) between kiwibuild and the private sector, over ten years the housing stock increases 10% (might happen) and the population stays the same (it won’t, but KISS).

    House prices would fall, but the construction sector would still be booming. People might go underwater, but the banks will still have money to lend because the odds of the underwater people being able to maintain payments won’t change.

    Some developers would move out of the market because of lower per-unit returns, but the cheaper houses and larger construction industry could make build-your-own more affordable.

    I dunno. Any other ideas?

    • corodale 14.1

      Seems you are correlating with supply and demand logic. It’s not the 70’s bro. Gold-standard is long-gone, and a decade of quantitative-easing later…

      International banking does set the price.

      • McFlock 14.1.1

        Oh, well, it must be true because you said it. God bless you and your hierophantic vocation.

  15. corodale 15

    RBNZ looking at possiblities of “…a six month closure of offshore funding markets for banks.” The mind boggles.

  16. cleangreen 16

    Oh gosh – ‘property pice declines’ – then all the ‘Jafas’ will jump out of their fifth floor apartments?

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Week That Was: Another week of major progress
    This week we moved into the second half of 2020 - and our Government delivered another week of big changes and major progress for New Zealanders. Read below for a wrap of the key things moments from the week - from extending paid parental leave, to making major investments in ...
    13 hours ago
  • Green Party opposes RMA fast-track bill that cut corners on environmental safeguards and public cons...
    The Green Party has opposed the COVID-19 Recovery Fast-track Consenting Bill which shortcuts normal consenting processes under the Resource Management Act (RMA), reduces public participation and narrows environmental considerations. ...
    1 day ago
  • Site of new freight hub revealed
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister of Regional Economic Development A regional freight hub for the lower North Island will be built just northeast of Palmerston North, Regional Development Minister Shane Jones has announced. The Government is investing $40 million through the Provincial Growth Fund to designate and buy land and design ...
    2 days ago
  • Greens call for Guaranteed Minimum Income to alleviate skyrocketing debt with MSD
    Green Party Co-leader Marama Davidson is calling for the introduction of a Guaranteed Minimum Income to lift hundreds of thousands of people out of poverty and prevent more families entering into further debt with the Ministry of Social Development.  ...
    2 days ago
  • Winston Peters: Facts matter when taxpayer money is on the line
    There has been renewed focus on New Zealand First acting as a handbrake on the Government after our decision to not support Auckland light rail. We are a handbrake for bad ideas, that is true, but our track record since 2017 has seen New Zealand First constructively also serve as an ...
    2 days ago
  • Bill raising minimum residency requirement for NZ Super passes first reading
    Mark Patterson MP, New Zealand First List MP New Zealand First’s Fair Residency for Superannuation Bill passed its First Reading in Parliament today. The Bill makes a significant change to NZ Super by raising the minimum residency requirement from 10 to 20 years, after age 20. “Currently, a migrant of ...
    2 days ago
  • Harsher penalties for assaults on first responders one step closer
    Darroch Ball MP, Spokesperson for Law and Order A New Zealand First member’s bill in the name of Darroch Ball introducing a six-month minimum prison sentence for assaults on first responders has passed its second reading in Parliament. The new offence of "injuring a first responder or corrections officer with ...
    2 days ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission delivers Coalition promise
    Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Deputy Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand First welcomes the launch of the new Criminal Cases Review Commission, gifted with the name from Waikato-Tainui - Te Kāhui Tātari Ture, announced in Hamilton today by Justice Minister Andrew Little. “New Zealand First has long believed in and ...
    3 days ago
  • Greens welcome huge new investment in sustainable projects
    The Green Party is celebrating over $800m in new funding for green projects, which will get people into jobs while solving New Zealand’s long-term challenges. ...
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand First demands answers from Meridian Energy
    Mark Patterson MP, Spokesperson for Primary Industries New Zealand First is appalled that Meridian seems to have been unnecessarily spilling water from its dams to drive up its profits."While New Zealanders have been coming together in some of our darkest hours, we don’t expect power gentailers to waste water and ...
    3 days ago
  • Getting New Zealand moving again: June 2020
    We wrapped up the first half of 2020 with a busy month, taking additional steps to support New Zealanders as we continue with our economic recovery. We rolled out targeted packages to support key industries like tourism and construction, helped create jobs in the environmental and agriculture sectors, and set ...
    4 days ago
  • Māori union leader appointed to Infrastructure Commission board
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister for Infrastructure Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones has welcomed the appointment of Maurice Davis and his deep infrastructure and construction experience to the board of the Infrastructure Commission. Mr Davis (Ngāti Maniapoto), is the seventh and final appointment to the board led by former Reserve Bank Governor ...
    4 days ago
  • Click-bait journalism at its worst
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Leader of New Zealand First New Zealand’s click bait journalism is taking a turn for the worse, with yet another example of sensationalist, wilful-misrepresentation of the facts. “New Zealand First has worked constructively with its Coalition partner on hundreds of pieces of legislation and policy, and ...
    4 days ago
  • Green Party proposes transformational Poverty Action Plan
    The Green Party is today unveiling its Poverty Action Plan, which includes a Guaranteed Minimum Income to ensure people have enough to live with dignity.     ...
    6 days ago
  • PGF accelerates Rotorua projects
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development The Rotorua Museum redevelopment and Whakarewarewa and Tokorangi Forest projects will be accelerated thanks to a $2.09 million Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) boost, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher ...
    7 days ago
  • Week That Was: Getting people into jobs
    This week, we rolled out the next steps of our recovery plan, with new infrastructure investment, extra support for tourism operators, and a new programme to get Kiwis into agriculture careers. The global economic consequences of COVID-19 will continue to be a challenge, but we have a detailed plan to ...
    1 week ago
  • Coalition commitment establishing Mental Health Commission delivered
    Jenny Marcroft MP, Spokesperson for Health New Zealand First welcomes the passage of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission Bill through its final reading in Parliament today fulfilling a coalition agreement commitment. “This is an important step in saving the lives of New Zealanders and delivers a key coalition commitment ...
    1 week ago
  • Whakatāne gets a $2.5m ‘turbo boost’
    Whakatāne has been given a $2.5 million boost to speed up previously funded projects and create more than 450 jobs in the next decade. Of those, the equivalent of 160 full-time jobs could be delivered in the next six weeks. Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters is in town to make ...
    1 week ago
  • $2.5m PGF funding to speed up economic recovery in Whakatāne
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister Fletcher Tabuteau MP, Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) is investing $2.5 million to accelerate three infrastructure projects in Whakatāne, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Under-Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau announced today. “This package is about ...
    1 week ago
  • Shane Jones calls out those holding drought-stricken Auckland ‘to ransom’ over water
    Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones is throwing his weight behind a bid by the Auckland Council to fast-track the more than doubling of the city's water allowance from the Waikato River. And he's coming out strongly against anyone who plans on getting in the way of this campaign. "It is my ...
    1 week ago
  • Another Green win as climate change considerations inserted into the RMA
    The Green Party is thrilled to see changes to the Resource Management Act (RMA) that mean consents for large projects can be declined if they will have significant climate change implications that are inconsistent with the Zero Carbon Act and Aotearoa New Zealand’s Paris Agreement obligations.  ...
    1 week ago
  • New Navy vessel Aotearoa to arrive in New Zealand
    Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence The Royal New Zealand Navy’s new ship, Aotearoa, set sail for New Zealand on 10 June from the Republic of Korea, and is due to arrive in Auckland tomorrow, announced Minister of Defence Ron Mark. “Aotearoa is the Royal New Zealand Navy’s new fleet ...
    1 week ago
  • Racing Industry Bill passes third reading
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Racing Racing Minister Winston Peters has today welcomed the Racing Industry Bill passing its third reading, creating the legislative framework for revitalising the racing industry while limiting the need for future government intervention. “For too long our domestic racing industry has ...
    1 week ago
  • Green Party seek amendment to ensure all prisoners can vote
    The Green Party has today put forward an amendment to the Electoral (Registration of Sentenced Prisoners) Amendment Bill to ensure all people in prisons can vote in general elections. ...
    1 week ago
  • Green Party welcomes new approach to delivering light rail
    The Green Party welcomes the decision to not proceed with Public Public Investment (PPI) delivery of Auckland’s light rail project and to instead run the process through the public service. ...
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand First welcomes PGF investment in Wairarapa Water
    Hon Ron Mark, New Zealand First List MP based in the Wairarapa New Zealand First List MP Hon Ron Mark welcomes the announcement of Provincial Growth Funding investment of $1.4 million to help secure the Wairarapa’s water supply. The funding boost will allow the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC), and ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First MP Mark Patterson selected as candidate for Taieri
    New Zealand First list MP Mark Patterson has been selected to represent the party in the newly formed Taieri electorate at the upcoming election. Mr Patterson, his wife Jude and two daughters farm sheep and beef at Lawrence and Waitahuna. He previously stood in the Clutha-Southland electorate however boundary changes ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Ground-breaking on NZ Post depot
    Hon Shane Jones, Associate Minister for State Owned Enterprises A new ‘super depot’ to be built for NZ Post in Wellington will create around 350 jobs during construction, Associate Minister for State Owned Enterprises Shane Jones says. Shane Jones today attended a ground-breaking and blessing ceremony for the parcel-processing depot ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Week That Was: Putting our economic plan into action
    Our strong economic management prior to COVID-19 - with surpluses, low debt and near-record-low unemployment - put us in a good position to weather the impact of the virus and start to rebuild our economy much earlier than many other countries. Now we're putting our plan to recover and rebuild ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Fleeing drivers hit new record-high yet again
    Darroch Ball MP, New Zealand First Spokesperson for Law and Order Recently released Police fleeing driver statistics have shown yet another increase in incidents with another record-high in the latest quarter. “This new quarterly record-high is the latest in a string of record-high numbers since 2014.  The data shows incidents ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Fletcher Tabuteau selected as candidate for Rotorua
    New Zealand First MP Fletcher Tabuteau is pleased to be confirmed today as the party’s candidate for the Rotorua electorate. Speaking at the Rotorua AGM for New Zealand First, Mr Tabuteau said this is an election that is incredibly important for the people of Rotorua. “The founding principles of New ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Greens call for Government office to address Rainbow issues following Human Rights Commission report
    The Human Rights Commission’s PRISM report on the issues impacting people based on their sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and sex characteristics (SOGIESC) provides an excellent programme of work for future governments to follow, say the Greens. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters continues push for trans-Tasman travel as military take control of operations
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters said the trans-Tasman bubble had not been jeopardised after a border botch-up resulted in New Zealand having two active cases of COVID-19. On Friday, Mr Peters told RNZ's Morning Report he had heard from Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison that borders for trans-Tasman travel would open by ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Winston Peters on the Government’s Covid-19 border blunder
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters said today he was pleased the army was now running the quarantine and isolation process - up until now it has been the Ministry of Health. Peters told Newstalk ZB's Mike Hosking that the army knew how to introduce and follow protocols and instil discipline. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First’s Ron Mark confirms bid for the Wairarapa seat
    Hon Ron Mark, New Zealand First List MP based in the Wairarapa New Zealand First MP and Minister for Defence and Veteran’s Affairs Ron Mark has confirmed his bid for the Wairarapa seat.“The Coalition Government has done a lot of good work throughout the Wairarapa, but many constituents have told ...
    2 weeks ago
  • New Zealand First welcomes second tranche of candidates
    New Zealand First is pleased to release the names of its next tranche of candidates for the 2020 election. We’re proud to announce these hardworking New Zealanders that have put their hand up to fight for a commonsense and resilient future.Jamie Arbuckle – Kaikoura Mark Arneil – Christchurch Central Jackie ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Joint effort under way to repatriate stranded Vanuatu nationals
    Rt Hon Winston Peters, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence A massive joint effort between New Zealand Government agencies, employers, and the Vanuatu Government is underway to repatriate over 1000 Vanuatu nationals stranded in New Zealand, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron ...
    2 weeks ago
  • $40m for regional apprenticeships
    Hon Shane Jones, Minister of Regional Economic Development Reprioritised funding of $40 million from the Provincial Growth Fund will support up to 1000 regional apprenticeships, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones said today. The Regional Apprenticeship Initiative is part of the wider Apprenticeship Boost announced by Education Minister Chris Hipkins ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Greens welcome new ACC zero carbon plans, call for ruling out any future fossil fuel investment
    The Green Party welcomes the ACC’s announcement to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050 but emphasises the need to go further, and faster to truly meet the climate change challenge. ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Farmers pleased with NZ First amendments to firearms bill
    Farmers are rejoicing after Labour agreed to an amendment pushed by New Zealand First in the firearms bill that will allow the use of restricted guns for pest control.  Concessions on gun control mean farmers will be able to apply for a licence to use restricted firearms for pest control. ...
    2 weeks ago

  • Building a more sustainable construction sector
    A new programme, which sets a firm course for the Building and Construction sector to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, has been announced by the Minister for Building and Construction Jenny Salesa. “A significant amount of New Zealand’s carbon emissions come from the building and construction sector.  If we’re serious ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • PGF funds tourism boost in Northland
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing more than $7.5 million in Northland ventures to combat the economic impact of the COVID-19 virus, Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters and Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones have announced. The Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) investment is going to the Northern Adventure Experience and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • Four new projects announced as part of the biggest ever national school rebuild programme
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Education Minister Chris Hipkins today announced significant funding for Auckland’s Northcote College as part of the first wave of a new nationwide school redevelopment programme to upgrade schools over the next 10 years. The $48.5 million project brings the total investment in Northcote College to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • COVID-19: Support to improve student attendance and wellbeing
    The Government has opened an urgent response fund to support schools and early learning services to get children and young people back on track after the Covid-19 lockdown. “While we are seeing improvements in attendance under Alert Level 1 Ministry of Education data shows that attendance rates in our schools ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Fast-track consenting law boosts jobs and economic recovery
    The law to boost the economic recovery from the impact of COVID-19 by speeding up resource consenting on selected projects has passed its second and third readings in the House today. “Accelerating nationwide projects and activities by government, iwi and the private sector will help deliver faster economic recovery and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Whanganui Port gets PGF boost
    Five port-related projects in Whanganui will receive a $26.75 million Provincial Growth Fund investment to support local economic recovery and create new opportunities for growth, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This is a significant investment that will support the redevelopment of the Whanganui Port, a project governed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • More support for Sarjeant Gallery
    Whanganui’s Sarjeant Gallery will receive an investment of up to $12 million administered by the Provincial Growth Fund to support its redevelopment, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. The project is included in a $3 billion infrastructure pipeline announced by Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Shane Jones yesterday. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding for training and upskilling
    The Provincial Growth Fund is investing nearly $2.5 million into three Te Ara Mahi programmes to support Manawatū-Whanganui jobseekers and employees to quickly train and upskill, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “Up to 154 local people will be supported into employment within the first year by these ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Statement from the Minister of Health Dr David Clark
      This morning I have formally tendered my resignation as Minister of Health, which was accepted by the Prime Minister. Serving as Minister of Health has been an absolute privilege – particularly through these extraordinary last few months. It’s no secret that Health is a challenging portfolio. I have given ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Scholarship placements for agricultural emissions scientists doubles
    Scholarships for 57 early-career agricultural emissions scientists from 20 developing countries is another example of New Zealand’s international leadership in primary sector sustainability, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. Mr O’Connor, announcing the scholarships today, says hundreds of applications were received for this fourth round of the CLIFF-GRADS programme (Climate, Food ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding for Foxton regeneration
    A project to help rejuvenate the Horowhenua town of Foxton will receive a Provincial Growth Fund investment of $3.86 million, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones announced today. “This funding for the Foxton Regeneration project will be used to make the well-known holiday town even more attractive for visitors and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Plan to improve protection of moa bones
    Moa bones and other sub-fossil remains of extinct species are set to have improved protection with proposals to prevent the trade in extinct species announced the Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage today. “We have lost too many of our native species, but these lost species, such as moa, remain an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Free lunches served up to thousands of school children in the South Island
    The Government’s free and healthy school lunches programme moves south for the first time creating jobs for around 30 people in Otago and Southland. “Eighteen schools with 3000 students are joining the programme – 11 have already begun serving lunches, and seven are preparing to start during Term 3. This is ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Screen Sector recovery package protects jobs, boosts investment
    Thousands of Kiwi jobs and investment in New Zealand productions will be protected through a screen sector support package announced today by Associate Minister for Arts Culture and Heritage Carmel Sepuloni, Minister for Economic Development Phil Twyford and Minister for Broadcasting Kris Faafoi. The package also includes investment in broadcasting ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • New fund to help save local events and jobs
    The Government has established a new $10 million fund for the domestic events sector to help save jobs and protect incomes as it recovers from the impacts of COVID-19, Minister of Economic Development Phil Twyford announced today. This funding from Budget 2020 follows talks with the event sector designed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Bill to improve fuel market competition
    The Government has taken another step in its commitment to making sure New Zealanders get a fairer deal at the petrol pump with the introduction of legislation to improve competition in the retail fuel market, says Energy and Resources Minister Megan Woods. “The fuel market study that this Government ordered ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • New Zealand joins global facility for pre-purchase of COVID-19 Vaccine
    New Zealand has joined a global initiative that aims to enable all countries to access a safe and effective Covid-19 vaccine, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters announced today. The COVAX Facility was recently launched by Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance. The Alliance includes the World Health Organization, UNICEF, the World Bank ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Right to legal representation in Family Court restored today
    From today new legislation takes effect to both restore the right to legal representation at the start of a Care of Children (CoCA) dispute in the Family Court, and allow parties to those proceedings to access legal aid where eligible. During a visit to the Family Court in Auckland today, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Transitioning to a fully-qualified home-based ECE workforce
    Home-based early childhood education (ECE) subsidised by the government will transition to a fully qualified workforce by 2025 to ensure better and more consistent quality, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today. “Quality early learning helps provide children with a strong foundation for their future,” Chris Hipkins said. From 1 January ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission gets to work
    The new Criminal Cases Review Commission | Te Kāhui Tātari Ture (CCRC) has started work and can now independently investigate claimed miscarriages of justice. “Even though we have appeal rights and safeguards against unsafe convictions, from time to time our justice system does get things wrong. The design of the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Speech by the Minister of Defence to the New Zealand Institute of International Affairs
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā karangatanga maha, tēnā koutou Ki a koutou Te Āti Awa, Taranaki Whānui, Ngāti Toa Rangatira, ngā mana whenua o te rohe nei, tēnā koutou Ko Te Whare Wānanga o Aotearoa ki ngā take o te Ao (NZIIA), Ko te Rōpū Tohu Tono ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Six months with baby and $20 more a week for new parents
    The Government’s increase to paid parental leave kicks in today with another 4 weeks taking New Zealand up to a full 6 months (26 weeks, up from 22 weeks) leave for new parents, and the maximum weekly payment will increase by $20pw, Workplace Relations and Safety Minister Iain Lees-Galloway says. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Infrastructure investment to create jobs, kick-start COVID rebuild
    A new package of infrastructure investments will help kick-start the post-COVID rebuild by creating more than 20,000 jobs and unlocking more than $5 billion of projects up and down New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones today outlined how the $3 billion infrastructure fund in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Statement on passage of national security law for Hong Kong
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters today expressed the New Zealand Government’s deep disappointment at the passage by China’s National People’s Congress Standing Committee of a national security law for Hong Kong. “New Zealand has consistently emphasised its serious concern about the imposition of this legislation on Hong Kong without inclusive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • July 1 marks progress for workers, families
    More jobs and more family time with newborns are the centrepiece of a suite of Government initiatives coming into effect today. July 1 is a milestone day for the Government as a host of key policies take effect, demonstrating the critical areas where progress has been made. “The Coalition Government ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Auckland water consent referred to Board of Inquiry
    Environment Minister David Parker has today “called in” Auckland’s application to the Waikato Regional Council to take an extra 200 million litres of water a day from the lower reaches of the Waikato River for Auckland drinking water and other municipal uses.  The call-in means the application has been referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • New Zealand to host virtual APEC in 2021
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker announced today that New Zealand’s hosting of APEC in 2021 will go ahead using virtual digital platforms. Mr Peters said the global disruption caused by COVID-19, including resultant border restrictions, had been the major factor in the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Matakana Link Road construction kicks off and drives jobs
    The start of construction on a new link road between Matakana Road and State Highway 1 will create jobs and support the significant population growth expected in the Warkworth area, Transport Minister Phil Twyford and Mayor Phil Goff announced today. Transport Minister Phil Twyford said construction of the Matakana Link ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • PPE supplies secured as COVID-19 response focuses on border
    The Government is prioritising its latest investment in PPE for frontline health workers, including staff at managed isolation and quarantine facilities, Health Minister David Clark says. “With no community transmission of COVID-19 our response now has a firm focus on keeping our border safe and secure. “We must ensure that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • PGF funding for Parihaka settlement
    The Parihaka Papakāinga Trust in Taranaki will receive up to $14 million for a new visitor centre and other improvements at the historic settlement that will boost the local economy and provide much-needed jobs, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones and Minister for Treaty of Waitangi Negotiations Andrew Little have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Protections for workers in triangular employment
    Protections for workers who are employees of one employer but working under the direction of another business or organisation have come into force, closing a gap in legislation that  made the personal grievance process inaccessible for some workers, says Workplace Relations Minister Iain Lees-Galloway. “This Government is working hard to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Government strengthens managed isolation system
    A range of improvements are already underway to address issues identified in the rapid review of the Managed Isolation and Quarantine system released today, Housing Minister Megan Woods said. The review was commissioned just over a week ago to identify and understand current and emerging risks to ensure the end-to-end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Whakatāne to go predator free with Government backing Ngāti Awa led efforts
    The important brown kiwi habitat around Whakatāne will receive added protection through an Iwi-led predator free project announced by Minister of Conservation Eugenie Sage and Under Secretary for Regional Economic Development Fletcher Tabuteau. “The Government is investing nearly $5 million into Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Awa’s environmental projects with $2.5 ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Growing Goodwood: Expanding wood waste recycling plant in Bay of Plenty, Waikato
    An extra 4,000 tonnes of offcuts and scraps of untreated wood per year will soon be able to be recycled into useful products such as horticultural and garden mulch, playground safety surfacing and animal bedding as a result of a $660,000 investment from the Waste Minimisation Fund, Associate Environment Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Scott Watson’s convictions to be referred to Court of Appeal
    The Governor-General has referred Scott Watson’s convictions for murder back to the Court of Appeal, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. Mr Watson was convicted in 1999 of the murders of Ben Smart and Olivia Hope. His appeal to the Court of Appeal in 2000 was unsuccessful, as was his ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Protecting Kiwis with stronger financial supervision
    A new five-year funding agreement for the Reserve Bank will mean it can boost its work to protect New Zealanders’ finances, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. “New Zealand has a strong and stable financial system. Financial stability is an area that we are not prepared to cut corners for, particularly ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Forgotten funds and missing money
    A law change has been introduced to make it easier for forgotten funds in institutional accounts to be returned more easily to their rightful owners. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash has introduced an amendment to the Unclaimed Money Act 1971. It will update the rules controlling forgotten sums of money held ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government delivers on mental health commitment
    The Government is delivering on election commitments and a key recommendation of He Ara Oranga: Report of the Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction with the establishment of a permanent independent Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission, Health Minister Dr David Clark says. Legislation enabling the establishment of the fully ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand privacy law modernised
    A Bill to replace New Zealand’s Privacy Act passed its third reading in Parliament today, Justice Minister Andrew Little has announced. “The protections in the Privacy Bill are vitally important. The key purpose of the reforms is to promote and protect people’s privacy and give them confidence that their personal ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Tourism operators provided extra support
    Extra support is being provided to tourism businesses operating on public conservation land announced Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis and Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage today.  The Government is providing $25m worth of support to tourism operators impacted by COVID-19, with a decision to waive most Department of Conservation tourism related concession ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago