English tackled on government's housing demand and supply record; Says construction industry telling him 10,000 houses a year in Auckland "as fast as they can" go; Says cutting immigration wouldn't help; Rules out looking at asset taxes

Tweet By Alex Tarrant Prime Minister Bill English has defended his government’s record on housing supply and demand responses, saying demand had both been underpinned by government subsidies for first home buyers while also being cut by way of loan-to-value ratio restrictions and introduction of a two-year capital gains tax which excludes the family home. Supply was set to be boosted …

ASB economists stop short of raising their forecast for now but see a combination of record butter prices and wet weather as providing upward pressure on global dairy prices

Tweet Image sourced from Shutterstock.com The dairy bulls at the ASB are again on the charge; confidently talking up the prospects of higher milk prices for farmers this year on the back of continuing strong butter prices and the threat of ongoing wet weather crimping NZ production and forcing a general rise in global dairy prices. ASB senior rural economist …

Domestic lumber demand is tailing off just as export log demand is picking up, putting upward pressure on local log prices. Demand from India growing faster than expected

Tweet By Scott Downs* Domestic lumber demand is flat. The demand from Christchurch is dropping significantly, but there is an increase in the Otago Lakes area driven by building in Queenstown and Wanaka. There has been a cooling in the development of medium to high rise apartments as banks require a high percentage of pre-sales before lending, but buyers don’t …

Labour Consumer Affairs spokesman Michael Wood says a Labour-led government may cap interest rates & wants Commerce Commission 'properly resourced' to protect consumers

Tweet Image sourced from Shutterstock.com The Labour Party is pledging to review the Responsible Lending Code and is reserving the right to cap interest rates should it be in a position to lead the Government after Saturday’s election. Labour’s Consumer Affairs spokesman Michael Wood also says the party wants the Commerce Commission to be “properly resourced” to protect consumers, and will take a “tough …