6 Nov 2015

Govt accounts dip into the red

1:00 pm on 6 November 2015

The government's books are back in deficit but it is not as bad as predicted in the May Budget.

In the first three months of this financial year the deficit was $545 million, but was substantially lower than the Budget forecast.

While economic growth is weakening, the government's finances do not appear to have been hurt by the slowdown.

Once investment gains and losses are removed the deficit was $253 million lower than expected.

The Treasury said the result was better than expected partly because the Accident Compensation Commission (ACC) had lower insurance costs and because of a drop in its outstanding claims liabilities. ACC also earned more money.

But the government's overall tax take was also $424 million higher than expected.

At the end of September total Crown assets were valued at $275 billion and liabilities were $185 billion.

Net debt was $1.9 billion lower than forecast at $62.8 billion.

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