Join the panel!

Research Results

Life not looking so bright for Kiwis

9 Aug 22

Life not looking so bright for Kiwis
Households worse off, fears life will get worse

Four out of ten New Zealanders think the financial position of their households is worse than a year ago.

17% think it is better than a year ago.

37% think it’s about the same, according to the latest economic and political support polling conducted by Horizon Research.

Those with personal incomes of $200,000 or more are most inclined to say their household’s financial position has weakened.

49% of these highest earners say it’s worse, compared with 34% of those earning the lowest incomes ($20,000 a year or less).

Views on worsening household finances over the past year are also driven by the party for which respondents voted at the 2020 general election.

Among supporters for the parties now in Parliament, voters for the Green party (57%) are most likely to say it’s worse, followed by Labour (41%) and National (43%). These are much higher than the result for all respondents (30%).

Will life in New Zealand be better or worse in the next year?

Around one in five adults (21%) think their lives in New Zealand will be better in the coming year than the last.

However, 29% think life will be worse. Of these 14% say it will be “much worse”.

31% say their life for them will be about the same.

Those with higher incomes are more likely to think life will get worse.

This includes 42% of those earning between $150,001 and $200,000 a year and 39% of those earning $200,001 or more.

Among middle income earners 21% expect life to worsen, while 31% say it will get better (8% much better).

Life outlook by party voted for

Act voters are more likely than voters for the five other parties now in Parliament to say life will get better in the coming year: 18% much better, 6% better.

Labour and Green voters are more likely to think it will stay the same (39%) over the next year, compared with 31% overall.

However, 29% of Labour voters expect life will get worse, along with 31% of Green and 58% of National voters.

Horizon says the results confirm a net 23% of Kiwis think their households are worse off financially than a year ago, and a net 18% think their lives will get worse.

Horizon says this could be driving some voter dissatisfaction with Labour, and there is a deep seam of discontent among National and ACT voters.

Tougher times for some businesses during the past year of COVID-19 restrictions could also be reflected.

Business managers and executives (45%, compared with 17% overall) are more likely to report a worse financial situation for their households than a year ago, along with 37% of business proprietors and self-employed.

However, both decision maker groups have high confidence their household finances will get better in the coming year (23% and 25%) than Kiwis overall (21%).

Horizon surveyed 1,044 people aged 18+ online between July 29 and August 3, 2022. The sample is weighted by age, gender, personal income, region, party voted for at the 2020 general election and education level to represent the adult population at the most recent census. At a 95% confidence level the maximum margin of error overall is +/- 3%.

Further information:

Graeme Colman, Principal, Horizon Research, email; telephone 021 848 576.