NZís Fastest Growing Region Revealed

07 September 2011 - Which Way to Pay

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NZís Fastest Growing Region Revealed

Auckland is still New Zealandís fastest growing region largely as a result of a strong housing market. The ďSuper CityĒ retains its place at the top ahead of Waikato and the Bay of Plenty who were tied in second place on the back of a recovery in retail sales and an improved housing market.

ASB based the ranking on a broad range of measures across the June quarter hopefully inducing a rise in consumer confidence in the ranked regions. A potential example of this is Southland which made one of the strongest gains during the quarter, rebounding from the bottom of the table to the top half of the rankings, on a recovery of its employment and real estate sectors.

In comments regarding the survey the bank noted:

"Construction activity remains weak although this is broadly in line with the nationwide experienceĒ.

Another factor that has presented challenges for the economic growth of some regions is the Psa virus, notably the kiwifruit producing region of the Bay of Plenty. Northland also suffered in the rating falling back to the bottom on the back of a weak housing market, retail sales and construction during the June quarter, ASB said. Regarding Northland the bank also said:

"Tourism is a key industry for Northland, and although guest nights remain subdued, the Rugby World Cup pool games should provide a boost to the hospitality industry in the region".

Moving south to Canterbury brings the news of improved retail sales and a more buoyant housing market during quarter two, however employment, car registrations and guest nights had fallen against year-ago levels:

"We expect rebuilding to gather momentum over 2012, and this will strongly boost activity in the region... For now, the rebound in retail sales and housing turnover in quarter two indicates underlying demand is returning in Canterbury".

Topping the rankings for employment growth is Otago, however overall the region was placed in the bottom half of the rankings reflecting a fall in retail sales, house prices, guest nights and construction activity there.

NZ economic scoreboard:

1. Auckland

2 = Waikato / Bay of Plenty

4. Nelson

5. Tasman

6. Southland

7. Hawkes Bay

8. Taranaki

9 = Canterbury / Wellington

11. Otago

12. West Coast

13. Manawatu / Wanganui

14. Marlborough

15. Gisborne

16. Northland



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