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The Government’s anti-growth policies are not only hurting business confidence but are also affecting business decisions such as hiring fewer workers, National’s Finance spokesperson Amy Adams says.

“Grant Robertson has tried to brush aside negative economic indicators or downplay them as a side-effect of an economy ‘in transition’. Insulated in the Beehive, he prefers to ignore the impact this Government’s policies are having in the real world.

“In the services sector, hiring intentions have now contracted for three straight months. Or to put it another way, employment in a sector that accounts for two-thirds of the economy is stalling. That’s the longest run of contractions since January 2011.

“Falling business confidence will be a factor but business owners are also coping with rising labour costs such as a higher minimum wage and the uncertainty created by this Government’s plans to meddle with employment law that doesn’t need fixing.

“The services PSI series comes just days after the PMI showed employment in manufacturing shrank for the third month in four in August. Businesses aren’t just gloomy, they’re acting on that sentiment by creating fewer new jobs and holding off on investment. That, in turn, makes it harder for ordinary New Zealanders to get ahead.

“This Government built its fiscal plans around optimistic growth forecasts that will be thwarted by its own anti-growth policies. That’s a symptom of a naïve administration that lacks the real-world experience to prudently oversee the New Zealand economy.”

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