The NZ Finance Minister announced this afternoon that GST revenues for the 11 months to 31 May are 4.2% above Treasury forecast. This is put down to greater than expected retail activity, particularly in the March quarter and lower refunds being paid out than expected.
I don’t think it’s particularly surprising total GST collections are up given increasing prices. It doesn’t necessarily mean kiwis are buying more, it’s just that they are spending more.
It will be interesting to find out next month whether the lower than expected level of refunds is a timing difference as suggested by Treasury.
There are some interesting numbers coming through though. GST on imports is up 30% on 2010 and net GST collected is up on 2010 by more than 13%.
GST is a good indication of commerce and these latest numbers indicate increased activity as well as increased prices.