9 Dec 2021

Freight movements data further sign economic activity is on the move

4:13 pm on 9 December 2021

Freight movements continue to rebound as coronavirus restrictions are eased across the country.

Truck 1

File pic Photo: RNZ / Simon Rogers

The ANZ Bank's monthly Truckometer index shows heavy traffic movements - a real-time measure of current economic activity - increased 4.6 percent in November.

The volume of light traffic, which pointed to activity six months ahead, increased by 10.6 percent.

ANZ chief economist Sharon Zollner said construction has been booming and agriculture was enjoying a period of high prices.

She said the bounce back in heavy traffic was consistent with other gross domestic product indicators that were showing a jump in economic activity as restrictions loosened.

"Both traffic and other economic data is going to remain volatile for a few months yet as the economy adjusts to life after lockdown. When the dust settles, we expect a slower pace of growth as consumers digest the new reality of higher interest rates, and the housing boom recedes.

"But that's not a bad thing - getting the economy back on a more sustainable path is important."

Zollner said the light traffic index in particular showed strong recovery.

The truckometer has continued to show signs of economic recovery since September, as the nation (outside Auckland) began to open up.