21 Sep 2009

Economists predict recession nearing its end

5:52 pm on 21 September 2009

Economists think the recession is nearing its end, and Wednesday's Gross Domestic Product result could be the last one to show the economy is contracting.

Economists expect GDP, a broad measure of the health of the economy, to decline on average 0.2% in the second quarter of the year.

That would mean it's fallen 2.7% in the last year.

Westpac markets economist Michael Gordon agrees with the market's prediction, and says things are likely to turn upwards soon.

He says a few sectors, such as construction and manufacturing, are still struggling.

But Mr Gordon says finance and business services are looking more positive, particularly real estate services as house sales pick up; mining as the Maui oil field starts up; and government spending is contributing to the mix.

He says exports have held up surprisingly well given the strength of the dollar and this has continued in the last couple of months.

Mr Gordon says New Zealand is consistent with the global trend and is probably in the middle of the pack in terms of how the global recovery is progressing.

He expects growth to return in the September quarter and says it is likely to become more impressive next year.