Roosting chorus: Housing boom unleashes RBNZ debate

National wants Robertson to direct RBNZ to tie cheap loans to banks to business and new house build lending, not just loans to landlords to buy existing homes; Ardern hints at first home buyer help

TLDR: Good evening. The housing boom unleashed a debate today about how the Government might stop the Reserve Bank from pouring cheap printed money into the housing market. PM Jacinda Ardern was defensive of the Government’s softly-softly approach to the central bank and the problem, but suggested again the Government could provide more help for first home buyer deposits.

Elsewhere, Tauranga City Council is in chaos with talk of bringing in a Commissioner to help untangle a deeply divided Council struggling with growth and the need to borrow heavily. New South Wales proposed replacing its stamp duties with a land tax in its Budget today.

In our political economy today

In the global political economy today

Chart of the day

Paul Barkle from Infometrics points out that New Zealand’s population has grown 1.9% or 94,200 to 5.101m in the year to September, which slower than 2.3% in the year to June. This is due to net migration in the September quarter of 1,600, down from 22,000 in the same quarter a year ago. Barkle sees migration continuing to slow for another year or two before a vaccine/s allows the borders to open again.

What I found interesting was the spurt of population growth just before Covid-19. The Labour-NZ First Government was not as anti-migration as it presented itself before the 2017 election.

“Without these new migrants coming into the country, growth in the working age population has all but come to a standstill. Therefore, migration and population growth are unlikely to be the answer to firms’ skills shortages in the near term.” Paul Barkle

Signs ‘o the times news

Longer reads worth your time

Useful reports

Te Puni Kōkiri has released a report showing 10,000 Māori businesses existed in New Zealand, eight times previous estimates.

Coming up…

Wednesday Nov 18 - PM Jacinda Ardern gives speech at Infrastructure NZ conference in Auckand

Sat Nov 21 - National Party AGM due to vote on re-election of President Peter Goodfellow.

Weds Nov 25 - 2pm - Reserve Bank to publish six monthly Financial Stability Report (FSR) . Expected to warn of re-imposition of high LVR lending limits from May 1, 2021.

Weds Nov 25 - Opening of Parliament for 53rd term, including swearing in of new MPs

Thurs Nov 26 - Speech from the throne in Parliament outlining Government’s agenda

Weds Dec 9 - Parliament rises for the year.Tuesday: Labour caucus

Ngā mihi

Bernard

PS: Thanks to Sean Gillespie’s wonderful Instagram feed for today’s Kākā pic.

PPS: A fun thing and a sobering thing