Paul Helm, Chief Government Accountant
The Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the seven months ended 31 January 2019 were released by the Treasury today. The statements are compared against forecasts based on the Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update 2018 (HYEFU 2018) published on 13 December 2018.
Core Crown tax revenue at $47.7 billion was $0.3 billion (0.5%) ahead of forecast. Within this, source deductions, customs and excise duties and GST were higher than forecast and partially offset by corporate tax revenue, which was below forecast.
Core Crown expenses of $49.4 billion were $0.6 billion (1.3%) below forecast. Of this, around $0.2 billion related to education expenses which were lower than forecast as a result of demand-driven factors across all sectors. Social assistance benefits and impairments of sovereign receivables made up round $0.1 billion of this variance while just under $0.1 billion related to KiwiBuild. These underspends are likely to be timing in nature.
The operating balance before gains and losses (OBEGAL) was a surplus of $1.9 billion, $0.5 billion higher than forecast. This was largely driven by the core Crown results offset by lower than forecast Crown entity and SOE results for the period.
When net gains and losses are added to the OBEGAL result, the operating balance was a $2.4 billion deficit, $3.8 billion less than forecast. This variance was mostly due to net investment losses (driven by market rates) of $0.5 billion, being $3.0 billion below forecast gains, in addition to net losses on non-financial instruments of $3.8 billion, which were $1.2 billion higher than the forecast losses.
Core Crown residual cash was a deficit of $2.4 billion, $0.3 billion more than the forecast deficit with net operating cash flows being lower by $0.1 billion and higher capital spending of $0.2 billion against forecast.
Net core Crown debt at $60.3 billion, or 20.7% of GDP, was $0.2 billion higher than forecast, broadly in line with the residual cash result which directly impacts net debt.
Total borrowing was $2.5 billion lower than forecast at $114.5 billion, primarily relating to the higher holding of the Government Bonds by government reporting entities eliminated on consolidation (including those repurchases not forecast).
Net worth attributable to the Crown was $127.7 billion, $3.9 billion lower than forecast at HYEFU 2018. The majority of this variance relates to the current operating balance deficit for the period.
|$ million||Year to date||Full Year|
|Core Crown tax revenue||47,658||47,407||251||0.5||84,325|
|Core Crown revenue||51,620||51,458||162||0.3||91,323|
|Core Crown expenses||49,387||50,025||638||1.3||88,669|
|Core Crown residual cash||(2,365)||(2,035)||(330)||(16.2)||(4,993)|
|Net core Crown debt4||60,267||60,034||(233)||(0.4)||62,677|
|as a percentage of GDP||20.7%||20.6%||20.9%|
|as a percentage of GDP||30.5%||30.8%||27.6%|
|Operating balance before gains and losses||1,914||1,433||481||33.6||1,724|
|Operating balance (excluding minority interests)||(2,366)||1,391||(3,757)||(270.1)||3,112|
|Net worth attributable to the Crown||127,692||131,623||(3,931)||(3.0)||133,480|
- Using the most recently published GDP (for the year ended 30 September 2018) of $290,902 million (Source: Stats NZ).
- Favourable variances against forecast have a positive sign and unfavourable variances against forecast have a negative sign.
- Using HYEFU 18 forecast GDP for the year ending 30 June 2019 of $300,168 million (Source: The Treasury).
- Net core Crown debt excluding student loans and other advances. Net debt may fluctuate during the year largely reflecting the timing of tax receipts.
- Gross sovereign-issued debt excluding settlement cash and Reserve Bank bills.
EnquiriesJayne Winfield | Office of the Government Accountant
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