20 May 2010

Bank predicts slowing in economic growth rate

7:50 am on 20 May 2010

The National Bank is expecting economic growth to continue but at a more moderate pace than in recent months.

The bank's latest regional trends survey shows nationwide economic activity rose 0.9% in the three months to March - the fourth consecutive quarterly rise.

That takes the annual rise to 0.1% - the first positive result since September 2008.

National Bank economist Steve Edwards says a massive surge in employment, a boost in business confidence and the continual rise of commodity prices have bolstered economic activity recently.

The North Island posted a 1% rise in economic activity during the quarter, while the South Island recorded a more modest 0.4% lift.