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Repeats Story Initially Transmitted at 01:38 GMT Aug 31/21:38 EST Aug 30
--Business Confidence, Activity Outlook Ease Slightly
--Pricing Intentions, Inflation Expectations Ease
     SYDNEY (MNI) -  - From ANZ bank's New Zealand business outlook for August
published Thursday:
                          August   July
Business Confidence         18.3   19.4
Activity Outlook            38.2   40.3
Exports                     26.8   32.7
Investment Intentions       22.8   23.0
Employment Intentions       17.1   25.7
Interest rates              39.9   50.6
Pricing Intentions          20.5   27.6
Inflation Expectations     1.88%  1.98%
Ease of Credit             -23.3  -27.4
Residential Construction    36.4   10.5
Commercial Construction     28.6    5.6
     FACTORS: New Zealand business confidence and activity outlook eased further
in August but remained at elevated levels. The decline was mainly due to a fall
in employment intentions which recorded the lowest reading in over a year.
Export intentions also eased, investment intentions were little changed while
profit expectations rose. The highlight was a rebound in construction
intentions, with both residential and commercial intentions rising sharply.  
     Pricing intentions eased for the second straight month and inflation
expectations fell further. Also, the proportion of businesses expecting interest
rates to rise fell to the lowest level in nine months. 
     TAKEAWAY: The details in the survey suggest prospects for growth remain
strong in line with the comment from the Reserve Bank Governor Graeme Wheeler in
a speech Wednesday. But easing in the indicators related to interest rates
suggest the RBNZ's policy is likely to remain on hold for longer, with some risk
to the downside.
--MNI Sydney Bureau; tel: +61 2-9716-5467; email:

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