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In seasonally adjusted terms, the number of dwelling consents in NZ fell 3.7% m/m in April, following 13% growth in March, notes Liz Kendall, Senior Economist at ANZ.  

Key Quotes

“Multi-dwelling consents fell 6.9% m/m, following a 38.7% increase in March. Consents for ‘houses’ fell 1.4% m/m after holding at 0.1% m/m in March. Consent issuance can be volatile from month to month and  some payback was expected after very strong growth last month.”

“Looking through monthly volatility, today’s figures are consistent with our expectation that activity levels will stabilize.  In trend terms, growth in dwelling consent issuance has eased from 2.8% m/m in March to 1.7% in April. We expect this trend of moderating growth to continue, particularly given already-high levels. Dwelling consent  issuance is running at a high level of 32,000 consents per annum and testing the limits of capacity constraints.”

Cost pressures have increased.  The value of consents per square metre is running at 6.7% y/y (3mma). This is a volatile proxy of cost pressures, but is consistent with construction cost inflation continuing at its current moderate pace of 4.7%, or perhaps even pushing a touch higher.”