Media statement

Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the Six Months Ended 31 December 2015

Paul Helm, Chief Government Accountant

The Financial Statements of the Government of New Zealand for the six months ended 31 December 2015 were released by the Treasury today.  The statements are compared against forecasts based on the 2015 Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU) published in December.

Overall the December results were largely in line with HYEFU expectations.

The operating balance before gains and losses (OBEGAL) was a deficit of $889 million for the six months to 31 December, $92 million higher than forecast. 

Core Crown revenue at $35.2 billion was $171 million lower than forecast with lower core Crown interest revenue being the main contributor to this variance.  Offsetting this result, core Crown expenses, at $36.5 billion, were $142 million (0.4%) lower than forecast.

Net losses were $611 million higher than forecast largely due to higher than expected actuarial losses on the ACC claims liability, mostly reflecting the impact of changes in valuation assumptions used compared to forecast.

When these gains and losses are combined with the OBEGAL result, the operating balance (excluding minority interests) was a deficit of $1,982 million ($709 million greater than forecast).

The core Crown residual cash position, at a deficit of $7.0 billion, was $913 million higher than forecast resulting in net debt also being higher than forecast at $66.9 billion (27.5% of GDP).  A large portion of this variance is expected to reverse in January due to the timing of payments over the Christmas period.

At 31 December 2015, total Crown assets were valued at $274.6 billion and liabilities were $184.5 billion while the Crown’s share of net worth stood at $84.3 billion.

The fiscal results were similar to the same time last year.  The current OBEGAL deficit of $889 million compared to a deficit of $990 million at the same time last year.  Core Crown tax revenue has increased by 3.3%, while core Crown expenses have grown by 2.5%, over that time.

  Year to date Full Year
$ million December
Core Crown          
Core Crown tax revenue 32,463 32,477 (14) 68,414
Core Crown revenue 35,188 35,359 (171) (0.5) 74,338
Core Crown expenses 36,518 36,660 142 0.4 74,911
Core Crown residual cash (7,008) (6,146) (862) (14.0) (5,398)
Gross debt3 85,745 86,360 615 0.7 87,123
as a percentage of GDP 35.2% 35.4%     35.6%
Net debt4 66,933 65,828 (1,105) (1.7) 65,890
as a percentage of GDP 27.5% 27.0%     26.9%
Total Crown          
Operating balance before gains and losses (889) (797) (92) (11.5) (401)
Operating balance (1,982) (1,273) (709) (55.7) 298
Net worth attributable to the Crown 84,321 85,187 (866) (1.0) 86,862
  1. Using the most recently published GDP (for the year ended 30 September 2015) of $243,803 million (Source: Statistics New Zealand).
  2. Using forecast GDP for the year ending 30 June 2016 of $244,923 million (Source: Treasury).
  3. Gross sovereign-issued debt excluding settlement cash and Reserve Bank bills.
  4. Net core Crown debt excluding student loans and other advances. Net debt may fluctuate during the year largely reflecting the timing of tax receipts.


Officer for Enquiries

Jayne Winfield | Office of the Government Accountant
Tel: +64 4 890 7205
Email: [email protected]