New Zealand Retail Sector – FUJIFILM launches high performing all-rounders to wow photographers

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions

Source: Undertow Media

Introducing the FUJIFILM X-T30 mirrorless camera and the FUJINON XF16mmF2.8 R WR lens – setting new standards in compact and lightweight photography gear

FUJIFILM Corporation last night unveiled yet another mirrorless camera and lens in a global announcement proving the 85-year veteran remains at the cutting edge of photographic technology.

Hot on the heels of the company’s highly successful X-T3 launch, the brand new, highly anticipatedFUJIFILM X-T30 mirrorless digital camera will be available for sale on New Zealand shores from March 20th 2019.

Pitched as a powerful companion for any photographer – beginners through to the enthusiast – it’s the latest addition to the X Series range of cameras, renowned for outstanding image quality, proprietary colour reproduction technology and intuitive dial-based handling.

“We’re calling this powerful little unit the ‘all-rounder’. It will appeal to a broad range of users from enthusiast photographers to first time beginners,” says Craig Robertson, professional photographer and FUJIFILM’s NZ X Series specialist.

“Photographers won’t outgrow the X-T30 as they enhance their skills. It will always deliver premium quality pictures and video captured with ease, regardless of experience.”

The X-T30 is equipped with a host of new functions offering outstanding performance, utilising the 4th Generation image sensor and processor with 26.1 megapixel resolution and fast high-performance AF.  In addition, phase detection pixels are now across the entire frame (100%).

Other advanced features include a joystick for shifting focus points easily, a new intuitive touch-screen panel with improved response, and an improved body design that offers better holding stability to ensure comfortable shooting even with larger lenses.

“Fujifilm cameras are known the world over for being lighter and more compact without compromising quality. The X-T30 is no different and we’re proud to say gone are the days of lugging heavy DSLR gear around,” says Craig.

An improved algorithm delivers even more advanced AF-tracking performance. This includes enhanced accuracy in face / eye detection and the introduction of a Face Select function to provide priority auto-focus on a selected subject.

The evolution of AF performance is available with both still photos and during video filming. Improved exposure stability during face / eye AF and face recognition in the AF-C (continuous AF) mode adds to ease of use. Video performance itself has also been enhanced, offering high-resolution audio recording and smooth 4K/30P video recording.

Coupled with the launch of the X-T30, FUJIFILM will add to its X Series line-up of interchangeable lenses with the release of the new FUJINON XF16mmF2.8 R WR to compliment the other compact prime lenses. Also available in New Zealand from March 20th 2019, this lens features a focal length equivalent to 24mm (in the 35mm format) and has a maximum aperture of F2.8.

“The XF16mmF2.8 lens is small and lightweight. Its inner focusing system is fast and quiet and is perfect for travel and landscape photographers,” says Craig.

“It’s also weather and dust resistant, and operates in temperatures as low as -10°C making it versatile for a range of conditions.”

The FUJINON XF16mmF2.8 R WR lens in black (and silver from April) has an indicative price of $699. The FUJIFILM X-T30 has an indicative price of $1,649 (body only) and will be available in black, silver and charcoal silver. Both can be purchased from authorised FUJIFILM dealers nationwide from March 20th 2019.

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Reserve Bank of New Zealand – Consultation on new mortgage bond standard extended and loan template published

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions

Source: Reserve Bank of New Zealand

The Reserve Bank is extending the consultation period for the proposed mortgage bond standard.

The new standard is aimed at supporting confidence and liquidity in the New Zealand markets. Consultation began in November.

Following requests from stakeholders, the Reserve Bank has extended the consultation period by two weeks. Feedback is now due by 5.00pm on 8 March 2019.

Submissions and a response to submissions will be published soon after consultation closes. The timeline for implementation will be updated when final decisions are made. The Reserve Bank is proposing a five-year implementation timeline.

The Reserve Bank has also published a draft template to assist banks to provide loan level data under the proposed mortgage bond standard.

More information:

·         Residential mortgage loan level data template (XLSX 3MB)

·         Review of mortgage bond collateral standards

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Net migration 48,000 in December 2018 year – Stats NZ Media and Information Release: International migration: December 2018

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions



Net migration 48,000 in December 2018 year – Media release

15 February 2019

The provisional estimate of annual net migration in the year ended December 2018 was 48,300 (± 1,800), Stats NZ said today.

Migrant arrivals were provisionally estimated at 145,800 (± 1,700) and migrant departures at 97,500 (± 1,400).

“Provisional migration estimates are a timely measure of migration, which we revise each month until they are finalised after 16 months,” population insights senior manager Brooke Theyers said.

Net migration for the year ended November 2018 is now estimated at 48,000 (± 1,200), compared with 43,400 (± 1,500) when it was first released last month. This is driven by changes in estimated migrant departures, from 100,600 (± 1,200) to 96,200 (± 1,000) for the year ended November 2018. Migrant arrivals remained relatively unchanged.

Why estimates now change

As new data becomes available, the model has more information about the border crossings it is trying to estimate. So, with an extra month of data available, this causes shifts in the estimated number of migrant arrivals, and departures, thus leading to a change in the net migration numbers.

For example, the extra data can contain information indicating the departure of travellers who were still in the country, but left in the extra month, or people who were away that have since returned.

“The revisions show the challenge of estimating migration independent of passenger cards. With nearly 14 million border crossings in 2018, small differences in classifying travellers to short-term or long-term can affect the provisional estimates.”

Compared with total border crossings, the number of migrants is very small. Of every 50 people crossing our border, typically 49 are short-term movements and only 1 is a migrant arriving or departing.

Of the 14 million border crossings in the December 2018 year, 81 percent of border crossings are currently classified with certainty. The remaining 19 percent represent 2.6 million border crossings, so a small change can affect the migration estimates.

The migration estimates become more certain after each subsequent month. In the December month, 1 in 4 arrivals are classified with certainty. This increases to 9 in 10 after four months. Therefore we expect the monthly revisions to become relatively small after about five months, as we can calculate the duration of stay/absence more definitively (according to the 12/16-month rule).

The provisional estimates have 95 percent confidence intervals (±) alongside them – the wider the interval, the greater the uncertainty about the estimate. However, these intervals reflect the model uncertainty, not the extent of future revisions to provisional data.

Our model will evolve as we get more data.  A key next step is to take the new series further back in time to quantify the variability in the provisional estimates.

This release is the second to publish official provisional migration estimates using outcomes data – after the departure card was removed.

Figure 1

Text alternative for figure 1, Migration estimates (thousands) by direction, rolling annual, year ended December 2001 to year ended December 2018

The new series in figure 1 shows the final estimates from May 2015 to August 2017, and provisional estimates from September 2017 to December 2018, for the outcomes-based measure of migration. An experimental outcomes-based series is shown from December 2001 to June 2017 to give a longer time series.

The outcomes-based migration measure is a more accurate measure of migration than the previously used intentions-based permanent and long-term (PLT) measure, which concluded in October 2018 with the removal of the departure card. This is because the outcomes measure reflects actual – not intended – durations of stay/absence. The greater accuracy is also supported by historical population data.

International migration uses new official measure compares the two migration measures. At times the new outcomes measure is lower than the old intentions-based measure, at other times it is higher, and sometimes there is no significant difference.

Net migration totals 270,000 over last five years

The last five years – 2014 to 2018 – had the largest net migration gains ever in New Zealand’s history with an estimated 270,000 more migrant arrivals than migrant departures. An estimated 700,000 migrants arrived and 430,000 migrants departed over this period.

Over the five years, most migrants arrived on work, visitor, or student visas. However, by definition, they stayed for at least 12 months after extending their visa or transitioning to other visa types, including residence visas.

“Even though many migrants arriving only stay for a year or two, it’s important to count them as migrants and not short-term visitors. They are part of our resident population, which has implications for infrastructure and service provision,” Mrs Theyers said.

Net migration down from peak

Annual net migration has gradually fallen from the record peak of 63,900 in the year ended July 2016. This reflects an increase in migrants leaving New Zealand over this period – in particular, non-NZ citizen departures.

Annual net migration for the December 2018 year (48,300 (± 1,800)) is estimated to be lower than a year earlier, when it was 52,700 (± 200).

Figure 2

Text alternative for figure 2, Estimated migration (mean estimate), year ended December 2018

Country of citizenship

In the December 2018 year, migrant arrivals were mostly citizens from Asia or Oceania. New Zealand citizens were the largest group, with 36,500 (± 600) migrant arrivals, followed by China with 15,700 (± 400) arrivals, and India with 14,400 (± 200) arrivals.

Migrant departures in the December 2018 year were mostly citizens from Oceania or Asia. New Zealand citizens were the largest group, with 44,700 (± 900) migrant departures, followed by:

  • China – 10,500 (± 400) departures
  • United Kingdom – 5,900 (± 200)
  • India – 5,400 (± 200)
  • Australia – 4,000 (± 300).

There was a net loss of 8,200 (± 900) New Zealand citizens in the December 2018 year – more left the country long-term than returned. The annual average since 2001 is a net loss of around 18,000 New Zealand citizens. The 2011 year had the biggest net loss of New Zealand citizens (36,200) over this period.

Experimental series and new series

Since May 2017 we have been publishing migration estimates using an outcomes-based approach. These monthly estimates are available from January 2001 to June 2017; they are no longer being produced. They are described here as an ‘experimental series’.

From January 2019, monthly migration estimates are published using the new migration system. This includes a statistical model to produce provisional migration estimates shortly after each reference month. The method to produce final migration estimates has also been enhanced by, for example, using day of travel rather than month of travel. These new migration estimates are available from June 2014 to December 2018 and are described here as ‘new series’.

The new series estimates will be extended back to 2001 during 2019. In the meantime, the experimental series is comparable to the new series and is suitable for longer historical comparisons. Note: there are some level shifts between the two estimates series.

Population estimates

The latest migration estimates for the December 2018 quarter will be used in the national population estimates being released on 18 February 2019. Population estimates back to the September 2013 quarter will be revised in the near future, but no date has been set. These will incorporate new migration estimates and 2018 Census data; however, the revisions for each of these may be done separately. We will advise the timetable for these revisions when it’s available.

More information

See Outcomes versus intentions: Measuring migration based on travel histories.

See Migration Data Transformation or email info@stats.govt.nz for more information.

Text alternative for figure 1

Three time-series line graphs show migration estimates for migrant arrivals, migrant departures, and net migration, from rolling annual years ended December 2001 to December 2018 – for experimental series and new series.

The graphs show final estimates from May 2015 to August 2017, and provisional estimates from September 2017 to December 2018, for the new series outcomes-based measure of migration. An experimental outcomes-based series for December 2001 to June 2017 gives a longer time series. The new series follows from the experimental series and shows similar ups and downs for migrant arrivals, migrant departures, and net migration.

Text alternative for figure 2

Diagram shows arrivals of non-NZ citizens were 109,200 (± 1,500) and departures were 52,800 (± 900), making a net migration gain of 56,400 (± 1,500) non-NZ citizens.

Arrivals of NZ citizens were 36,500 (± 600) and departures were 44,700 up (± 900), making a net migration loss of 8,200 (± 900) NZ citizens.

Result is total net migration of 48,300 (± 1,800).

Note: The provisional estimates have 95 percent confidence intervals (±) alongside them – the wider the interval, the greater the uncertainty about the estimate. However, these intervals reflect the model uncertainty, not the extent of future revisions to provisional data.

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December visitor numbers reach new heights – Stats NZ Media and Information Release: International travel: December 2018

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions



December visitor numbers reach new heights – Media release

15 February 2019

There were 529,300 visitor arrivals in December 2018, the highest for any month, Stats NZ said today.

December 2018’s figure was 15,900 higher than December 2017, which was the previous record holder.

Visitor arrivals in the December 2018 month averaged 17,100 a day. That’s equivalent to just over the population of Tauranga arriving every eight days in the month.

The United States led the increase in visitor arrivals for December 2018, up 4,900 compared with December 2017. Other changes were:

  • Australia, up 2,300
  • United Kingdom, up 2,100
  • India, down 1,500.

Visitors stay for longer holidays in December

The median length of stay (half stayed longer than this time, half stayed less) for visitors arriving in December 2018 was 13 days. This compared with nine days for the 2018 year.

“Visitors tend to stay longer than usual in December months,” population insights senior manager Brooke Theyers said. “This is because more visitors visit family and fri

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New Zealand Recreation Sector – The great outdoors and safety go hand in hand – Get Outdoors Week (15-22nd February 2019)

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions

Source: Water Safety New Zealand (WSNZ)

The inaugural Get Outdoors Week (GO Week) led by the Mountain Safety Council (MSC) and Water Safety New Zealand (WSNZ) is about encouraging families to get out and enjoy the great outdoors well prepared and informed.

While concerns around safety may put some parents off heading out on an adventure, GO Week is about making sure people get the information they need so they can get out and enjoy the natural beauty of Aotearoa safely and with confidence.

GO Week is an annual week-long initiative jointly developed by New Zealand’s outdoor recreation, outdoor safety and tourism community. We are truly blessed in this country with stunning natural landscapes and waterways and GO Week is about encouraging families to get out and see their country.

When it comes to enjoying the outdoors with your children around our beaches, lakes and rivers Water Safety New Zealand’s key water safety message is – constant active adult supervision at all times. If you are in or near the water always keep your little ones within arms reach.

Ameliaranne Ekenasio, mother, Central Pulse and Silver Fern netballer and WSNZ ambassador is an advocate of getting outside and enjoying the water with your children.

“The number one thing is just being present. Always being alongside your child enjoying each other’s company, enjoying these experiences together. That is the best way to keep them safe” says Ameliaranne.

https://watersafety.org.nz/Under%20Fives

CEO Jonty Mills says while the focus of WSNZ is drowning prevention people should be encouraged to get out and enjoy New Zealand’s beautiful waterways safely.

“New Zealand has such stunning outdoor environments. It’s about being aware of the risks and being well informed and prepared so that you make smart safe decisions.”

Mike Daisley, CEO of MSC says it’s all about enabling the best outdoors experience for the participant. “At the heart of the week is ensuring participants explore the great outdoors, especially those who might have been a bit unsure how to go about planning for an outdoor adventure.”

There are Go Week events being held around the country to educate and inform people about how to enjoy the outdoors safely.

Go Week has a s big social media element so you can share your adventures using the hashtag #GOWeekNZ and using GOWeekNZ stickers, gifs and you can also earn badges.

Head to www.goweek.org.nz for all the detail.
@GetOutdoorsWeek on Facebook
@getoutdoorsweek on Instagram
@GetOutdoorsWeek on Twitter

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New Zealand Central Bank – New Reserve Bank of New Zealand monetary policy committee remit reiterates focus on price stability & employment

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions

Source: New Zealand Government – Finance Minister Grant Robertson

The Coalition Government’s plan to reform and modernise the Reserve Bank Act experienced an important milestone today, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says.

Grant Robertson and Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr today signed the first ‘remit’ setting out the Reserve Bank of New Zealand’s new dual employment and price stability objectives. They also signed the ‘charter’ that will govern the decision-making of the Bank’s new Monetary Policy Committee (MPC).

“When we came into office we immediately started work under the Coalition Agreement between Labour and New Zealand First to review and reform the Reserve Bank Act to reflect the significant changes to our economy and monetary policy practices since the Act was enacted nearly 30 years ago,” Grant Robertson said.

The new remit, charter and the MPC deliver on Phase 1 of the review of the Reserve Bank Act. The remit will normally be issued by the Minister of Finance to the MPC, a new body to formulate monetary policy through decisions like the level of the Official Cash Rate. The charter will normally be agreed between the Minister of Finance and the MPC. As part of the transition to the new monetary policy framework, the first remit and charter are being agreed between the Minister and Governor.

The remit replaces the Policy Targets Agreement (PTA) between the Minister of Finance and Governor. The charter sets the transparency requirements and decision-making procedures for the MPC. Both come into force from 1 April, with the existing PTA covering the Bank’s monetary policy decision-making until then.

Under the remit signed today, the Reserve Bank’s operational objectives for monetary policy are to:

·        Keep inflation between 1 and 3 percent over the medium term, with a focus on keeping inflation near the 2 percent mid-point; and

·        Support maximum sustainable employment.

“This dual mandate is similar to those seen in countries including the US, Australia and Norway, and highlights the importance of monetary policy as a tool to support the real, productive, economy,” Grant Robertson said.

Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr says the remit and charter form a significant part of the new monetary policy framework that takes effect from 1 April.

“The remit is similar to the existing Policy Targets Agreement and recognises the role monetary policy plays in promoting the wellbeing of New Zealanders, by making sure inflation remains low and stable, and supporting maximum sustainable employment,” Adrian Orr said.

“The MPC Charter also provides for a move to greater transparency, and embracing diverse views. It sets some ground rules for the Committee, ensuring that the decision-making process is effective and transparent, and making it easier to hold the Committee to account for their decisions,” Mr Orr said.

Under legislation passed in December, the MPC will consist of between five and seven members, with the majority being Reserve Bank internal staff and a minority of external members. The first committee will consist of seven members (four internal, three external), with the Governor as chair. The members of the MPC are to be announced in due course.

“There has been greater recognition in recent decades of the benefits of committee decision-making structures and the Act has now been modernised to reflect this. Combined with the dual price stability and employment mandates, these reforms will ensure monetary policy better supports the New Zealand economy as we head towards the middle part of the 21st Century,” Grant Robertson said.

 

More information: Read the remit and charter here

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Stats NZ Media and Information Release: Food price index: January 2019

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions



Food price index: January 2019

14 February 2019

There was an incorrect link to Rental price indexes: January 2019 at the end of our FPI email. See Rental price indexes: January 2019. We apologise for any inconvenience.

Stats NZ’s Food price index: January 2019 media and information release is available on our website.

Video

See the Food price index: January 2019 video.

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Broccoli and lettuce prices jump in January – Stats NZ Media and Information Release: Food price index: January 2019

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions



Broccoli and lettuce prices jump in January – Media release

14 February 2019

Broccoli prices more than doubled in January 2019, while lettuce prices rose almost 80 percent, Stats NZ said today.

The average price of a 350g head of broccoli was $2.76 in January, up from a near seven-year low of $1.25 in December.

“A bumper December harvest contributed to particularly low broccoli prices in December 2018,” consumer prices manager Caroline White said. “As the harvest returned to normal levels in January, we saw a larger than usual price rise.”

Lettuce prices rose 79 percent in January. The price of a 500g head of lettuce was $1.86 in January 2019, compared with $1.04 in December 2018.

“The price of lettuce in January this year was more than 50 cents a head higher than the same month last year,” Ms White said.

The price for a 200g avocado fell to $1.58 in January 2019, a drop of 43 percent from January 2018. Avocado prices were particularly high in early 2018, due to the small harvest.

The price of milk also fell to a 19-month low in January 2019, to $3.49 per two-litre bottle of standard dark blue top.

“Supermarket milk prices are highly influenced by the farmgate milk price,” Ms White said. “Fonterra’s forecast milk payout was cut multiple times from May last year. While dairy farmers face tougher times, consumers usually benefit from the lower prices when supermarkets pay less to the suppliers.”

Yoghurt prices rose 14 percent, coming off specials in late 2018. Cheese prices rose 4.6 percent, and butter prices rose 2.4 percent.

Overall, food prices rose 1.0 percent in January 2019, compared with December 2018.

Food prices were up 0.8 percent in the year to January 2019, mainly driven by higher prices for ready-to-eat food (up 3.3 percent), milk, cheese and eggs (up 2.9 percent) and restaurant meals (up 2.3 percent), partly offset by lower fruit prices (down 5.8 percent).

New rental price indexes

Today we published our monthly rental price indexes for the first time. See Rental price indexes: January 2019 for more information.

Video

See the Food price index: January 2019 video.

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Stats NZ Information Release: Environmental-economic accounts: 2019 – tables

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions



Environmental-economic accounts: 2019 – tables

14 February 2019

Environmental-economic accounts show how our environment contributes to our economy, the impacts of economic activity on our environment, and how we respond to environmental issues.

This release presents the first of two sets of tables we are releasing this year. The first set, for the period to 2017, contains the accounts for which we have data currently available:

  • environmental protection expenditure
  • environmental taxes
  • fish monetary stocks (available to 2018)
  • marine economy
  • natural capital monetary estimates
  • renewable energy monetary stocks.

The tables are available in Excel and CSV format.

Revisions since Environmental-economic accounts: 2018 are due to improved methodology and revised input data. See footnotes on each table for more detail. Revision flags are shown on the CSV files.

The second set of tables will cover air emissions and timber stocks and will be published on 27 June together with the full report.

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New Zealand Central Bank – Official Cash Rate unchanged at 1.75 percent – Reserve Bank of New Zealand

Source: MIL-OSI Submissions

Source: Reserve Bank of New Zealand

Statement by Reserve Bank Governor Adrian Orr: Tena koutou katoa, welcome all.

The Official Cash Rate (OCR) remains at 1.75 percent. We expect to keep the OCR at this level through 2019 and 2020. The direction of our next OCR move could be up or down.

Employment is near its maximum sustainable level. However, core consumer price inflation remains below our 2 percent target mid-point, necessitating continued supportive monetary policy.

Trading-partner growth is expected to further moderate in 2019 and global commodity prices have already softened, reducing the tailwind that New Zealand economic activity has benefited from. The risk of a sharper downturn in trading-partner growth has also heightened over recent months.

Despite the weaker global impetus, we expect low interest rates and government spending to support a pick-up in New Zealand’s GDP growth over 2019. Low interest rates, and continued employment growth, should support household spending and business investment. Government spending on infrastructure and housing also supports domestic demand.

As capacity pressures build, consumer price inflation is expected to rise to around the mid-point of our target range at 2 percent.

There are upside and downside risks to this outlook. A more pronounced global downturn could weigh on domestic demand, but inflation could rise faster if firms pass on cost increases to prices to a greater extent.

We will keep the OCR at an expansionary level for a considerable period to contribute to maximising sustainable employment, and maintaining low and stable inflation.

Meitaki, thanks.

 

More information: Monetary Policy Statement

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