Quarterly Economic Monitor March 22

Taupō’s economy continues to bounce back strongly from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Infometrics provisionally estimates that the district’s GDP grew 6.4% over the year to March 2022, slightly outperforming the national economy which grew 5.2%. Despite the constraint imposed by the lack of international tourists on Taupō’s economy, the district’s GDP

is now 5% higher than the pre-pandemic level measured in the year to March 2020.


Tourism expenditure in Taupō is still below its pre-pandemic level but was nevertheless up 3.9% in the year to March 2022. Total consumer spending (which includes tourism expenditure) was up by 6.3%, which was higher than the national growth of 6.1%.


Strong milk prices are supporting Taupō’s economic recovery. The dairy sector contributes nearly 6% of Taupō’s GDP and Infometrics expects the dairy payout in the season to June 2022 to inject an additional $76m dollars into the local economy.


Over recent years population growth has been a driver of Taupō’s economy. Health enrolments, which are a broad indicator of population growth, increased by 0.8% over the year to March 2022 suggesting that the population is continuing to grow. Taupō’s economic strength is reflected in the labour market. The number of Taupō residents in employment grew by a whopping 3.3% in the year to March 2022, substantially higher than national growth of 2.7%. Strong employment growth has driven the unemployment rate to its lowest level (2.8%) since the mid-2000s. The number of Jobseeker Support recipients has dropped below 1,400 from a peak of 1,544 in the December 2020 quarter.


While house value growth has been easing around the country, values have continued to grow at an eye-watering rate in Taupō. The average house value in the March 2022 quarter was a touch under $900,000, up 31% over the year, compared with growth of 18% nationally. The housing market is responding to high house values with 97 dwellings consented in the quarter, almost double the 10-year average. Non-residential consents are at their highest level in the last decade.

Gross Domestic Product

GDP in Taupo District was provisionally up 6.4% for the year to March 2022, compared to a year earlier. Growth was higher than in New Zealand (5.2%). Provisional GDP was $2,736 million in Taupo District for the year to March 2022 (2021 prices). Annual GDP growth in Taupo District peaked at 7.1% in the year to December 2021.


Consumer Spending

Electronic card consumer spending in Taupo District as measured by Marketview, increased by 6.3% over the year to March 2022, compared to a year earlier. This compares with an increase of 6.1% in New Zealand.


Tourism Expenditure

Total tourism expenditure in Taupo District increased by 3.9% in the year to March 2022, compared to a year earlier. This compares with an increase of 7.1% in New Zealand.

Total tourism expenditure was approximately $344 million in Taupo District during the year to March 2022, which was up from $331 million a year ago.


You can read the full report below including Traffic flow, Employment, Jobseeker Support recipients, Unemployment rate, Dairy payout, Health enrolments, Residential consents, Non-residential consents and House values and sales.


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