Business News Feed

Wait and see

September activity in New Zealand’s services sector returned to overall levels seen in July, according to the BNZ – BusinessNZ Performance of Services Index (PSI).The PSI for September was 56.0, which was 1.2 points lower than Augu…

Solid September

Activity in New Zealand’s manufacturing sector during September was largely unchanged from the previous month, according to the BNZ – BusinessNZ Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI).
The seasonally adjusted PMI for September was 57.5 (a PMI reading above 50.0 indicates that manufacturing is generally expanding; below 50.0 that it is declining). This was 0.4 points lower than August, but continued to display very healthy levels of expansion. Overall, the sector has remained in expansion in all months since October 2012.

Catherine Beard
Executive Director

BusinessNZ’s executive director for manufacturing Catherine Beard said despite some uncertainty in the market, the sector has continued on with business as usual.
“It was encouraging to see the proportion of positive comments increase further to 69.5%, compared with 65% in August. In terms of specific comments, a clear proportion of negative comments continued to mention general uncertainty around the election. Positive comments were varied, but a number mentioned increased orders and sales both domestically and offshore”.
BNZ Senior Economist, Craig Ebert, said that “the manufacturing industry would seem to be forging ahead quite nicely. This was definitely the message in the PMI’s production index for September, while the tone from its new orders index remained relatively upbeat too”.

Spark customers benefit from more capacity on the mobile network

Spark has announced the addition of a third mobile node or Evolve Packet Core (EPC), adding additional capacity and resiliency to its nationwide mobile network.   
Spark previously had two mobile EPC nodes handling large volumes of traffic, based in Auckland and Christchurch. The new third node, located in Porirua, gives the company additional resiliency and the flexibility to shift and re-route traffic around as required, particularly in the case of a natural disaster or emergency.
Spark mobile customers have already devoured 34 Petabytes of data – (that’s over 34 Million Gigabytes of data or 4,886,819 hours streaming Ultra High Definition video) in the first eight months of 2017 compared to 6.89 Petabytes consumed in the same period last year.
This incremental increase in capacity means the Spark network is geared up to meet future technology requirements including the roll-out of 4.5G and the expansion of its wireless broadband service.
Spark’s General Manager of Networks, Colin Brown, says that the changing needs of customers is driving a focus to a wireless future.
“Rapid advances in wireless capability, together with the uptake of mobile apps and video streaming means we see people on the network for longer and downloading more data than ever before. 
“We want to ensure we are giving our customers the best wireless experience possible. The installation of this third node is important because our customers expect an ‘always on’ service and so we need to ensure we have the capacity and resiliency to provide this. 

“This demand for data means we need to evolve our network and our plans as we have done with the expansion of our 4.5G network and the introduction of our new unlimited mobile data plan.”  
Spark is the only New Zealand mobile provider to have deployed next generation 4.5G technology as a pathway to 5G. 
Spark has switched on 4.5G in Silverdale, Milwater, Christchurch CBD, Queenstown, Cambridge, Turangi, Alexandra, Cromwell and Red Hill in Whitianga. More New Zealand towns are to be activated with 4.5G within the next 12 months, alongside Spark’s ongoing 4G upgrade and deployment programme.