24 Mar 2010

'Sustainable improvement' needed for credit upgrade

10:38 am on 24 March 2010

New Zealand needs sustainable improvement in its fiscal position and debt levels to secure an upgrade in its credit rating outlook, according to Fitch Ratings.

Fitch put New Zealand's AA+ rating on watch for a possible downgrade in July last year due to worries about the country's huge current account deficit and rising external debt.

Fitch says New Zealand needs more than one-off or short-term improvements in the current account deficit or government finances to change its view.

It will wait until after the Budget in May to reassess New Zealand's overall credit rating.