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Aug. 9, 2020, 10:15 p.m. EDT

New Zealand business confidence weakens

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By MarketWatch

WELLINGTON, New Zealand--New Zealand businesses were more pessimistic in early August as the border closure and impending end of wage subsidies weighed on confidence.

A net 42.4% of businesses expected economic conditions to worsen compared with net 31.8% in July, according to the preliminary results of ANZ Bank's monthly survey released Monday.

Business confidence had bounced after pandemic lockdown measures were eased in May but showed signs of stalling last month.

"With temporary fiscal support measures poised to roll off in coming months, and the impacts of a closed border to be fully felt only when the peak-tourism summer season arrives, there are plenty of economic hurdles to clear yet," ANZ said.

A net 17.0% of the businesses surveyed expected their own activity to weaken compared with net 8.9% expecting that in July.

The net figures sum the proportions of positive and optimistic responses.

Write to Stephen Wright at stephen.wright@wsj.com

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