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Westpac's NZ profit mixed, impairments start improving

Westpac's NZ profit mixed, impairments start improving
Wellington, May 5 NZPA - Australian bank Westpac reported earnings of $NZ125 million in New Zealand in the six months to March 31, down from $NZ202m in the same period last year but said impairment charges are now easing.

Slipperless woman claims big booty

Slipperless woman claims big booty
Wellington, April 30 NZPA - A Queenstown woman who won Big Wednesday's $2.8 million purse this week can now buy a new pair of slippers. Her family evaded flood worries in Queenstown today by flying to Wellington to claim the booty.

ANZ's New Zealand performance improves

ANZ's New Zealand performance improves
Wellington, April 29 NZPA - Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd, the country's largest bank, nearly tripled interim earnings from the preceding six months as bad debt provisions fell and the net interest margin rose.

OCR unchanged at 2.5 percent

OCR unchanged at 2.5 percent
Wellington, April 29 NZPA - Most economists are picking the official cash rate (OCR) to start rising in June or July, after the Reserve Bank today left the rate unchanged at the 2.5 percent where it has been for the past year.

OCR unchanged at 2.5 percent

OCR unchanged at 2.5 percent
Wellington, April 29 NZPA - The Reserve Bank left the official cash rate (OCR) unchanged today at a record low 2.5 percent, where it has been for the past year.

Cash rate kept at 2.5 percent

Cash rate kept at 2.5 percent
Wellington, April 29 NZPA - The Reserve Bank today left the official cash rate unchanged at a record low 2.5 percent.

Insurance industry needs commission rules - council

By Dave Williams of NZPA Wellington, April 27 NZPA - The scrapping of financial advisor commissions has thrown the spotlight on the insurance industry, with calls for more transparency around commissions.

NZ banks face constraints as they advance from global crisis

Wellington, April 27 NZPA - Banks in New Zealand face a series of constraints as they seek to move ahead following the global financial crisis, KPMG's annual financial institutions performance survey says.

Ex-Air NZ worker loses long-running dispute

Ex-Air NZ worker loses long-running dispute
By Tony Stickley for NZPA Auckland, April 14 NZPA - A former accounts clerk with Air New Zealand has been ordered to pay $65,000 towards the airline's legal costs after taking an unsuccessful case to the Employment Court.

Esera case adjourned

Auckland, April 1 NZPA - An Auckland man who admitted stealing $1.75 million from his employer, faking accountancy qualifications and forging documents to convince a bank to loan him $450,000 has had his sentencing date put off until May.

Benefit rates increase tomorrow

Benefit rates increase tomorrow
Wellington, March 31 NZPA - Benefit and superannuation rates will increase 1.96 percent tomorrow in line with inflation. Social Development Minister Paula Bennett said superannuation rates will be further adjusted to bring them up to 66 percent of the net average wage.

NZ building consents up in February

NZ building consents up in February
Wellington, March 30 NZPA - Residential building consent figures rose in February, but some economists are warning of risks to a continued recovery in the industry.

English says wealthy families not paying fair tax

English says wealthy families not paying fair tax
Wellington March 24 NZPA - There are 10,000 wealthy families claiming Working for Families credits while also getting tax breaks for losses on investment properties, Finance Minister Bill English says.

Fixed-rate dip expected to be temporary

Fixed-rate dip expected to be temporary
Wellington, March 24 NZPA - A dip in fixed-term mortgage rates is only expected to be temporary, despite being seen as an indication of increasing confidence in the stability of banks in this country.

Home loan affordability little changed in February

Home loan affordability little changed in February
Wellington, March 23 NZPA - Home loan affordability remained steady last month as caution from both house buyers and sellers held the property market in check, according to a report today.

More Indication Of Easing Property Market

More Indication Of Easing Property Market
Wellington, March 18 NZPA - An indicator of the strength of the property market was last month at its lowest value since June 2008, although still positive.

Residential property sales nearer to normal: REINZ

Residential property sales nearer to normal: REINZ
Wellington, March 12 NZPA - Residential property sales last month were closer to 2009 levels after in January reaching their lowest level in nearly two decades, Real Estate Institute of New Zealand (REINZ) figures show.

Reserve Bank Keeps On Same Track

Reserve Bank Keeps On Same Track
Wellington, March 11 NZPA - The Reserve Bank left the official cash rate (OCR) unchanged at a record low 2.5 percent, but economists noted it is no longer "comfortable" with the inflation outlook.

Reserve Bank Leaves Cash Rate At 2.5 Percent

Reserve Bank Leaves Cash Rate At 2.5 Percent
Wellington, March 11 NZPA - The Reserve Bank today left the official cash rate at 2.5 percent and indicated it may begin removing the stimulus to the economy in the middle of 2010.

ANZ New Zealand Sees Signs NZ Economy Is Recovering

ANZ New Zealand Sees Signs NZ Economy Is Recovering
Wellington, Feb 26 NZPA - ANZ New Zealand, New Zealand's largest bank, is encouraged by a lift in profit in the December 2009 quarter compared with the September quarter, in line with the emerging economic recovery.

Lombard Announces Reverse Takeover Details

Lombard Announces Reverse Takeover Details
Wellington, Feb 23 NZPA - The Lombard Group, the parent of failed Lombard Finance, will go to its shareholders this week with details of a reverse takeover deal that could see it 98.5 percent owned by the shareholders of Perth-based insurer Australian Consolidated Insurance.

Uncertainty Weighs On Softening Housing Market - Survey

Uncertainty Weighs On Softening Housing Market - Survey
Wellington, Feb 23 NZPA - Confidence in the New Zealand housing market, which recovered in 2009, is showing signs of softening again, according to a survey of the three months to January.

NZ Housing Market Recovery Looking Unconvincing

NZ Housing Market Recovery Looking Unconvincing
Wellington, Feb 19 NZPA - The New Zealand residential property market recovery is looking a little unconvincing in a report by Mike Pero Mortgages. The Mike Pero Mortgages-Infometrics Property Cycle Indicator (PCI) fell slightly to positive 5.23 in January, from 6.67 in December.

`Premature Ageing' Hitting Workforce

Wellington, Feb 15 NZPA - New Zealand's workforce is being hit by "premature ageing" and needs to boost its numbers, says a Waikato University researcher.

Residential Property Market Lost Momentum In January

Residential Property Market Lost Momentum In January
Wellington, Feb 11 NZPA - The residential property market lost momentum in January, according to Real Estate Institute of New Zealand data seen by economists.

Residential Building Rebound To Continue

Residential Building Rebound To Continue
Wellington, Feb 9 NZPA - A rebound in home building consents is expected to continue in coming years, but in a new report industry analyst BIS Shrapnel says the cycle will peak at a lower level of activity compared to the last peak in 2004.

Kiwibank Cuts Variable Mortgage Rate

Kiwibank Cuts Variable Mortgage Rate
Wellington, Feb 8 NZPA - State-owned Kiwibank is cutting its variable mortgage rate by 14 basis points to 5.65 percent and hiking its 18 month fixed rate by 10 basis points to 6.49 percent.

Major Banks Emerge From Recession Despite Bad Debt, Report

Wellington, Feb 4 NZPA - New Zealand major banks are crawling out of the recession gloom despite bad debt expenses and costs related to an Inland Revenue dispute.

Wellington Housing Market Leads Country - Report

Wellington, Feb 2 NZPA - The Wellington housing market is the only one gaining momentum as the rest of the country continues to hold steady, according to a property market analysist's December figures.

Frugality Urged As Council Rates Leap Ahead Of Inflation

Wellington, Jan 29 NZPA - With local authority rates rising last year at three times the rate of inflation, a business-oriented lobby group says ratepayers expect more frugality from councils this year.

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