Information release

Data - Fiscal Time Series Historical Fiscal Indicators 1972-2023

The spreadsheet available here contains historical fiscal data, including debt, fiscal balance, tax and spending since 1972. An explanation of each series can be found in the Series Description sheet.

Summary of Data#

Data covers the years 1972 to 2023 and a link to current fiscal forecasts is provided below. We have not attempted to reconcile and backdate for changes in accounting policies and users should be aware of breaks in the data. The data can be used to identify general trends in ‘headline’ fiscal indicators over time.

Breaks in the data result from a change from using March (1 April to 31 March) fiscal years to June (1 July to 30 June) fiscal years, and a change in the accounting framework applied. Data prior to 1994 are prepared on a cash basis; data from 1994 are accrual and are consistent with GAAP. Data generally complies with New Zealand equivalents of International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) from 1994 – 2004, however revenue and expense series between 1994 and 1996 have not been backdated and are on an “old-GAAP” basis.

Data complies with Public Sector Public Benefit Entity (PBE) Standards from 2005 onwards.  The impact of moving from NZ IFRS to PBE Standards on 1 July 2014 was not significant, due to a strong degree of convergence between the two suites of standards.  Note 33 in the Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the year ended 30 June 2015 outlines the impact of the adoption of PBE Standards.

In addition, between 1987 and 1993, expenses are inclusive of GST (introduced in 1986). These payments on government purchases are subsequently reflected in receipt and revenue series. There is only a minor net impact on surplus measures through timing differences from some payments being made and corresponding receipts recorded in different fiscal years.

Two new PBE accounting standards were adopted at 30 June 2020 and the results as at 30 June 2019 have been restated to reflect this change. Further information can be found in note 28 of the Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the year ended 30 June 2020.

Summary of Changes in How the Data Were Prepared and Reported
Period Reporting Framework GST on Government Expenditures Fiscal Year
1972 - 1986 Cash Exclusive March Years
1987 - 1989 Cash Inclusive March Years
1990 - 1993 Cash Inclusive June Years
1994 - 2004 GAAP (NZ-IFRS) Exclusive June Years
2005 - GAAP (PBE Standards) Exclusive June Years

Some further differences between GAAP and cash reporting frameworks:

  • The GAAP series includes expenses for which there are no cash flows in the period, for example depreciation.
  • The GAAP series consolidates the Reserve Bank as part of the core-Crown with the impacts of Crown Entities and State Owned Entities recorded in total-Crown series. The cash based series excluded these entities.
  • The revenue and expense functional classifications used in the GAAP series are different from those used in the cash series.
  • The GAAP series generally reports items on a gross basis whereas the cash series nets some receipts against expenditure. For example, user charges and revenue from goods and services are reported as a separate line item in the GAAP series but are netted off financial net expenditure in the cash series.

Fiscal Forecasts#

Access current fiscal forecasts in Economic and Fiscal Updates covering the next five outyears for:

  • Core Crown expense forecasts by functional classification
  • Revenue, expense, surplus and debt forecasts.