11 Jun 2012

Business confidence slumps

10:28 pm on 11 June 2012

Business confidence has slumped to a 15-month low.

The BNZ's confidence survey found a net 5% of respondents expect the economy to be in worse shape in a year.

That is a turnaround from May, when a net 22% expected better economic times ahead, and the lowest reading since March 2011.

BNZ chief economist Tony Alexander says developments in Europe and slowing global growth have undoubtedly sapped confidence about the year ahead and the agricultural sector was less optimistic.

"But I think another factor here is the pull back we've seen recently, broadly, in commodity prices.

"The feedback we've had from farmers, for instance, has definitely verged not so much towards the negative side, but certainly a high degree of caution about what the coming season is going to bring."