News in the political economy since Friday included:
Off a touch
Statistics New Zealand reported on Friday New Zealand's Terms of Trade fell 1.9 percent in the March quarter from a record all-time high in the December quarter. The Terms of Trade measure the power of our export receipts to buy imports. A 6.7 percent fall in dairy prices helped push export prices down 2.2 percent, while import prices fell 0.3 percent. The record high terms of trade have bolstered economic growth over the last year, along with record high migration and strong jobs growth (albeit without much wage growth).
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission lodged criminal cartel charges late on Friday against ANZ Banking Group , Deutsche Bank and Citigroup over the the trading of shares after ANZ raised A$3 billion in fresh equity capital through a share placement. ( Reuters )
Air New Zealand announced on Friday afternoon it had agreed a domestic code-sharing deal with Qantas to replace its expiring code-sharing deal with Virgin Australia. Qantas and New Zealand would code-share on 30 routes in New Zealand and 85 in Australia, but not on trans-Tasman flights. Qantas will continue to codeshare with Jetstar on flights between Australia and New Zealand. Tickets can be bought from the end of July for travel from October 28.
US non-farm payrolls rose a higher-than-expected 223,000 in May, helping to push unemployment down to an 18 year low of 3.8 percent. Annual wage growth rose to 2.7 percent in May from 2.6 percent in April, cementing in expectations the US Federal Reserve will hike its official cash rate next week. But the wage inflation was not so strong that the Federal Reserve is expected to speed up its expected pace of two more rate hikes this year. ( Reuters )