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New Zealand Consumers Optimistic About Job Prospects


By James Glynn

The Westpac McDermott Miller Employment Confidence Index (ECI) for New Zealand rose by 1.4 points to 99.7 in the fourth quarter, indicating that consumers are more upbeat about their job prospects. However, concerns about the rise in the cost of living and the impact of higher mortgage interest rates continue to persist.

According to Westpac senior economist Michael Gordon, the increase in the ECI this quarter can be attributed to the growth in households’ earnings over the past year. Nevertheless, households remain cautious of the rising cost of living, even if they have received a substantial pay raise.

Finding and securing a job continue to be the primary concerns for New Zealanders, with perceptions about job availability declining further in the fourth quarter. This decline is likely a result of both the decrease in job vacancies and the intensifying competition for those positions due to a surge in net inward migration.

“Public sector employees are expressing genuine concerns about their future job security,” added Gordon.

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