National News Brief, Monday October 20

GST and taxes could jump in next five years; interest rate to dive; inflation at 18-year high; Key wants to work on lending guarantee; marriage breakdown could cost taxpayers $1b a year; Rings actors finally get payday; and more

  • Inflation is at an 18-year high, reports the Herald. Statistics NZ will release its food prices and inflation figures tomorrow, which are expected to show that inflation for the year ended September was as high as 5 per cent. The Reserve Bank aims to hold inflation at between 1 and 3 per cent.
  • Marriage breakdown could be costing taxpayers $1 billion a year, according to the Herald. The Institute of Economic Research for the Family First says taxpayers end up paying the price for broken families through welfare benefits, family tax credits and higher costs for healthcare, housing and law and order. The research group commissioned a report which found that New Zealand has the second-highest proportion of sole parents in the developed world, behind the United States. Auckland University economist Susan St John rubbished the report.