Paul Helm, Chief Government Accountant
The Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the five months ended 30 November 2017 were released by the Treasury today. The statements are the first financial results to be compared against forecasts based on the 2017 Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU 17) published on 14 December 2017.
Core Crown tax revenue was $30.4 billion for the five months to 30 November 2017. Overall tax was higher than expected by $0.5 billion, with corporate tax and GST both $0.2 billion ahead of forecast. While some of this variance can be expected to remain, it is too early to establish with certainty whether it will persist or relates to monthly volatility.
Core Crown expenses of $33.3 billion were slightly higher than of the $33.1 billion forecast with some expenditure recognised earlier than expected.
The operating balance before gains and losses (OBEGAL) was a surplus of $125 million. When the core Crown results are combined with higher than expected Crown entity results, the OBEGAL surplus was $582 million more than the forecast $457 million OBEGAL deficit.
Net investment gains of $3.9 billion were recorded to 30 November 2017, $1.6 billion higher than forecast. Partially offsetting these investment gains, ACC recognised an actuarial loss of $1.4 billion on its outstanding claims liability mainly due to the discount rates used to calculate this liability being lower than expected.
When gains and losses are added to the OBEGAL result, the operating balance was a $2.4 billion surplus, $0.7 billion larger than forecast. This result flows directly into net worth attributable to the Crown which was $0.9 billion higher than forecast at $113.0 billion.
Core Crown residual cash was a deficit of $2.9 billion and was close to forecast ($0.2 billion lower than forecast).
The lower residual cash deficit, along with higher than forecast circulating currency and higher than forecast valuation gains, contributed to net debt being $0.7 billion lower than forecast.
|$ million||Year to date||Full Year|
to HYEFU 17
to HYEFU 17
|Core Crown tax revenue||30,408||29,877||531||1.8||78,172|
|Core Crown revenue||33,187||32,635||552||1.7||84,670|
|Core Crown expenses||33,267||33,106||(161)||(0.5)||81,653|
|Core Crown residual cash||(2,903)||(3,060)||157||5.1||(2,647)|
|as a percentage of GDP||31.6%||31.3%||29.5%|
|as a percentage of GDP||22.2%||22.5%||21.7%|
|Operating balance before gains and losses||125||(457)||582||127.4||2,541|
|Net worth attributable to the Crown||113,015||112,134||881||0.8||116,568|
- Using the most recently published GDP (for the year ended 30 September 2017) of $278,312 million (Source: Statistics New Zealand).
- Using HYEFU 17 forecast GDP for the year ending 30 June 2018 of $286,391 million (Source: the Treasury).
- Gross sovereign-issued debt excluding settlement cash and Reserve Bank bills.
- Net core Crown debt excluding student loans and other advances. Net debt may fluctuate during the year largely reflecting the timing of tax receipts.
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