Dr Cullen has told the Finance and Expenditure that he beleives the economy shrank in the first quarter of 2008. NZPA reports:
Dr Cullen told the finance select committee today that economic data since the May budget was far more gloomy than Treasury predicted.
“It is now quite clear that the quarterly GDP figure for the first quarter (of the 2008 year) almost seems inevitably to be negative,” Dr Cullen said.
A recession is negative growth over two quarters, so if this is true then the June 2008 GDP figures may put NZ into recession. The March 08 figures are out on 27 June so the June 08 figures should be out at the end of September – likely to be the beginning of the election campaign.