Rate rise almost certain after jobless rate hits 16-year low

Thursday 13 May 2004

Economists say another interest rate rise in June, and probably again in July, is almost certain after figures out today showed the unemployment rate fell to a 16-year low of 4.3 per cent.

By The Landlord

Mortgage and business lending rates were likely to soon head north of 8 per cent, they said.

The jobless rate fell from 4.6 per cent at the end of last year and is now the lowest since December 1987.

Statistics New Zealand's March quarter Household Labour Force Survey showed job growth was much stronger at 0.9 per cent than forecast.

Economists say the rate of job growth, or even economic growth, is unsustainable without creating inflationary pressure.

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