Gross domestic product (GDP) fell 0.1 percent in the March 2023 quarter, following a 0.7 percent fall in the December 2022 quarter, according to quarterly figures released by Stats NZ today.
“The December 2022 and March 2023 quarter declines follow growth in the June and September 2022 quarters,” economic and environmental insights general manager Jason Attewell said.
There were a range of results at industry level in the March 2023 quarter, with just over half of industries declining in the quarter. Business services was the biggest downwards driver, down 3.5 percent. This was partly offset by a 2.7 percent increase in information media and telecommunications this quarter.
“Management consulting, advertising, scientific, and engineering design services drove the fall in business services,” Attewell said.
The March 2023 quarter included the initial impacts of Cyclones Hale and Gabrielle and teachers’ strikes.
“The adverse weather events caused by the cyclones contributed to falls in horticulture and transport support services, as well as disrupted education services.”
“Fewer teaching days led to falls in primary and secondary education services,” Attewell said.
The expenditure measure of GDP fell 0.2 percent this quarter. This decline was driven by run downs in inventories held by businesses, and a fall in exports of services.
A 2.4 percent increase in household consumption expenditure and 2.0 percent growth in investment in fixed assets partially offset the falls.
The household expenditure growth was led by increased spending by New Zealanders on international travel. In contrast, households spent less on goods, particularly grocery food.