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May update of Regional Activity Indices released

Issue date:

The May update of the Regional Activity Indices (RAIs) continues the trend of the last three months, in showing abnormally high levels of activity growth compared to May last year.

Key points to note:

  • All fourteen regions indicate that activity growth for May 2021 is much higher than average.
  • This is because activity growth is measured relative to May 2020, when economic activity across New Zealand was still significantly curtailed by nationwide COVID-19 restrictions.
  • We expect the RAIs to return to more meaningful levels from next month’s update onwards, as the effect of last year’s lockdown on the calculation passes.

For more details you’ll find the RAIs on page 4 of this week’s Weekly Economic Update.

The Regional Activity Indices (RAIs) are a set of experimental indicators that seek to track how regional economies are performing in near real-time.

The RAIs will be updated 2-3 weeks after the close of each month and will be published within the Treasury’s Weekly Economic Update.

The data for the RAIs, as well as most of the input data, is available to view and download on the Stats NZ COVID-19 data portal. Further documentation on how to use the indices, and how they are constructed, is also available from the Regional Activity Indices page here on the Treasury website.

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