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Tax take improves government's books

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 5/12/2016 Sean Martin
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The government didn't lose quite as much money as Treasury was predicting in the four months to the end of October.

However, the better-than-expected results don't take into account the effects of the Kaikoura earthquake, warned chief government accountant Paul Helm.

The operating balance, before gains or losses, was a deficit of $131 million rather than the $1.065 billion which was forecast back in May - boosted by the $23.2b in collected tax, which was 3 per cent higher than forecast, Treasury said on Tuesday.

That was helped by corporate tax revenue (up 10 per cent) and GST revenue (up 4.5 per cent) both coming in higher than forecast.

Core Crown expenses were close to forecast at $25.3b.

When combined with higher than forecast gains from Super Fund investments and ACC actuarial gains the operating balance of nearly $3b was well above the forecast loss of $227m.

Core residual cash was a deficit of $490m rather than a deficit of $1.5b because of the higher tax take, which helped lower net debt to $1.75b, or 24.8 per cent of GDP.

Crown assets were worth $291b and liabilities were worth $192b.

Treasury's forecast for the coming six months is due to be released on Thursday.

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