New Zealand unemployment unexpectedly rises to 3.3%

New Zealand’s unemployment rate unexpectedly rose by 0.1% to 3.3% in the June quarter, Stats NZ said.

Stats NZ Senior Manager Becky Collett said: “Measures of surplus labor market capacity have declined throughout the year and have remained low for several quarters, indicating a continued tight labor market.” increase. Said.

Despite the modest increase, many people moved from part-time to full-time jobs, resulting in a 0.5% increase in working hours.

Annual wage growth also showed its strongest growth since late 2008, increasing by 3.4% in the three months to June.

However, this wage inflation rate is far from the annual consumer price index of 7.3%.

Bank of New Zealand head of research Stephen Toplis said the data suggested the labor market may be “softening even faster than the Reserve Bank expected”.

The Reserve Bank of New Zealand had expected the unemployment rate to fall to 3.1%.

“What’s really important here is the fact that it’s been three straight quarters of no job growth. In fact, we’ve lost 3,000 jobs cumulatively in that period,” he said (pdf).

Toplis increasingly feels New Zealand has reached a tipping point in its economy, and the speed of the expected rise in unemployment will be ‘important’ in determining where cash rates will peak. .

Data research firm Kalkine NZ says that while unemployment remains strong, it does not take into account the rising brain drain and slowing immigration growth.

“This fact highlights how a tight labor market looks very different from the prevailing labor market.” Said“Additionally, migrants are reluctant to choose New Zealand as a destination, partly because of slowing economic growth.”

‘Positive news’ for the government

Employment Minister Carmel Ceproni said the employment rate near record lows was “very positive” news.

“[This] It shows that our economic plan is working. Unemployment remains very low and businesses continue to hire despite an uncertain global environment,” she said. in a statement“Wages are rising to help with cost-of-living pressures, while the government is doing whatever it takes to support household incomes.”

Before the unemployment data came out, National Party leader Christopher Luxon said: told Morning Report The good news is that more people are getting jobs.

“The bottom line here is that anyone who has a job is good and that’s the way to dignity. You don’t get rich sitting on welfare and locked in it for the rest of your life.” he said.

Epoch Times photo
People shop in the CBD of Auckland, New Zealand on May 18, 2022. (Phil Walter/Getty Images)

living expenses payment

However, many New Zealanders continue to suffer from cost-of-living pressures as real wages fall.

The New Zealand government began paying living expenses assistance to about 1.3 million people on August 1st.

However, the government is under scrutiny after it was revealed that kiwis living abroad were also receiving payments.

“Many of these people are New Zealanders who have worked and paid taxes abroad for many years. Others are immigrants who came to New Zealand on work visas and then returned to their home countries,” said a National Party finance spokesman. said Nicola Willis.

“New Zealanders will be shocked to learn that their hard-earned money is being scattered around the world in a surprise lottery.”

Inland Revenue, which manages payments, said it assessed people’s eligibility based on the information they had, according to the NZ Herald.

For the same reason, payments could also go into the accounts of the deceased, the ministry said.

Rebecca Chu


Rebecca Zhu is based in Sydney. She focuses on the national politics of Australia and New Zealand. Any tips? Please contact her at [email protected]