Overall business confidence as measured by ANZ’s Business Outlook Survey has plunged to its lowest level since April 2008.
The ANZ economists have summed it up neatly with their headline for the latest release, which simply says: “Business confidence: Nothing good to say about it”
And there isn’t.
An already weakening NZ dollar weakened further after the release of the survey results at 1pm on Thursday, falling to US63.2c.
In the survey, the so-called ‘headline’ business confidence fell another 8 points to -52% in the August ANZ Business Outlook, the lowest since April 2008.
Remember, in 2008 we were getting into the middle of the Global Financial Crisis.
Firms’ expectations for their own activity over the year ahead fell 6 points to -1, the lowest read since April 2009.
The more important data point is firms’ expectations for their own activities.
Employment intentions fell 3 points to a net 9% of firms intending to reduce employment, the lowest since mid-2009. Investment intentions fell 4 points to -4. Capacity utilisation lifted 3 points off July’s decade low.
That is the most worrying stat.