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Household Expectations Survey redeveloped to improve data quality and coverage

The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) is improving our quarterly Household Expectations Survey, due out at 3pm, 18th February 2022.

The RBNZ Household Expectations Survey (M13) has been redeveloped to improve data quality and coverage, and better align with international best practice for capturing household inflation estimates.

The RBNZ has undertaken a review of how the survey is carried out, including the methodology, and questionnaire design. We have consulted with other organisations on how they run surveys that capture households’ inflation estimates. This review led to improvements in the methodology and questionnaire design to better align with international best practice, sharpen the precision of respondent estimates and increase analysis opportunities.

The survey will remain an online survey of 1,000 New Zealanders aged 18 years and over, and will now be run by Research NZ on behalf of the RBNZ. Question wording has changed and respondents are now asked for specific point estimates of inflation when giving expectations - in the past they were given categories to choose from when asked these questions.

In particular, the change in question wording is expected to cause a series break for 5-year ahead inflation expectations, as the change in question wording clarifies that we are asking for an annual rate of inflation. The series break means the new data for this inflation measure cannot be directly compared with previous quarters.

Expectations for 1-year ahead inflation are expected to remain comparable, as we have sought to maintain the integrity of this time series.

Respondents are asked a range of questions including their expectations of CPI inflation and house price inflation. Additional questions have been added to the survey, and the new data will be published in future quarters.

We have renamed the improved collection Tara-ā-Whare - Household Expectations Survey. The word “Tara” is derived from Pakitara, or the walls, and “Whare” means a house. Tara-ā-Whare is also used to describe going to door to door, to ask questions.

If you have any queries or comments, please contact us at [email protected]