Monday, 11 November 2013

A new milestone in debt [updated]

The spin  today is that the New Zealand government accounts are said to be “in slightly better shape than forecast.”

And Bill English still promises a surplus in government accounts “next year.” (There’s always jam tomorrow.)

But today, we see that his deficit for the last quarter was still a whopping $1.3 billion. (In 2008 it was $31 million.)

And the money the govt owes, its total debt, has just hit $60 billion. (In 2008, when they took over, it was $10,2 billion.)

Which is about $60,000 for every tax-paying New Zealander. (Of which there is barely a million.)

Or about 28% of what is measured as the country’s Gross Domestic Product.

So Bill is still borrowing $27 million per week day on our tab, to fund budgets spending $70 billion per year.

Just thought you’d like to know.

[UPDATED courtesy of Mark Hubbard’s numbers, and Nick Kim’s cartoon.]



  1. Worse, for a population of only just over 4 million, we're still borrowing over $27 million per day.

    We've got just over 2 million taxpayers indentured to funding $70 billion annual budgets ... :)

  2. Hi Mark, thanks for the numbers. Although I believe the more accurate figure for taxpayers, by which I mean those who pay their own way rather than relying on taxes taken from others, is around one million. Scary, huh?

  3. Yeah, re the one million.

    But on your update it's worse: that's $27 million borrowing per day, not per week, at the moment.

  4. Corrected. That puts it at an annual rate of around $98.8 billion a year, plus interest.


1. Commenters are welcome and invited.
2. All comments are moderated. Off-topic grandstanding, spam, and gibberish will be ignored. Tu quoque will be moderated.
3. Read the post before you comment. Challenge facts, but don't simply ignore them.
4. Use a name. If it's important enough to say, it's important enough to put a name to.
5. Above all: Act with honour. Say what you mean, and mean what you say.