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Economic Research

Our team of economists can keep you updated on the trends, financial news and projections that affect you most.

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Economists

Nick Tuffley

ASB Chief Economist

Since starting out in 1997 as an economist, it's fair to say Nick has seen a few hair-raising moments over the years, including the Asian Financial Crisis and the Global Financial Crisis.

One of Nick's strengths is his ability to communicate complex ideas in a readily understandable and entertaining way.  He thrives on helping people understand the economic environment to help enrich the quality of their business or personal life. He’s proud to lead a team that has won two Forecast Accuracy Awards from Consensus Economics, and has a strong track record with their Official Cash Rate and dairy price forecasts. 

Nick grew up in Christchurch and graduated with a Master of Commerce degree from the University of Canterbury.  He learned his economic ropes at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand before a long stint as a Senior Economist at Westpac, and joined ASB as Chief Economist in 2007.

Mark Smith

Senior Economist

Mark joined ASB in 2017, with over 20 years of public and private sector experience working as an economist in New Zealand and the UK.

His resume includes lengthy stints at ANZ and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, and he has also worked at the Bank of England, HM Treasury and the New Zealand Transport Agency. Mark's areas of specialisation include interest rate strategy, macro-economic analysis and urban economics.

Born and bred in the Waikato, Mark studied at Waikato University where he graduated with a Master of Social Sciences, majoring in Economics.

Mark's key strengths are the ability to use his extensive experience, inquisitive nature, analytical ability, creativity and pragmatism to dig a little deeper and to deliver common sense solutions to tackle complex problems.

When not at work Mark likes to travel, keep fit and spend time with his friends and family.

Jane Turner

Senior Economist

Originally hailing from sunny Nelson, Jane moved to Auckland to join the ASB team in 2008.  As Senior Economist, Jane's main focus is co-ordinating the team’s macro-economic forecasts.  In this key role, Jane was thrilled by the team’s twice consecutive win of the Consensus Economics Forecast Accuracy award.   

During her decade-long career in economic forecasting, Jane has gained a thorough knowledge of the New Zealand economy.  Her current focus is on New Zealand GDP growth, including both manufacturing and the construction sectors.  She has spent time forecasting most sectors of the economy, including inflation, trade, housing, labour and financial markets.

Prior to joining ASB, Jane honed her macro-economic forecasting skills at the Reserve Bank of New Zealand.  Jane is a qualified scarfie, attending Otago University and graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce in Economics with 1st class honours.  In 2014, she took a career break from ASB to travel the world and learn to snowboard.

Nathan Penny

Senior Rural Economist

Nathan's bold predictions and his ability to call it as he sees it sets him apart from other New Zealand rural economists.  In particular, his controversial, but ultimately successful $6.00/kg MS 2016/17 milk price forecast is case in point.

He has a natural talent to distil complex issues and translate them into user-friendly formats for diverse groups, including farmers and financial markets participants.  Nathan brings unique perspectives and thought leadership to the country's rural and broader export sectors.  

Nathan joined ASB as the Rural Economist in 2013, having cut his teeth at the New Zealand Treasury.  He hails from the Kapiti Coast and studied at Massey University where he graduated with a Master of Applied Economics.

Nathan's expertise lie in dairy and other commodity markets, trade economics and economic forecasting.  He's a leading GlobalDairyTrade auction and NZX dairy derivatives commentator and he also authors ASB's monthly rural publication, Farmshed Economics.  

He's a proud Hurricanes and Wellington Phoenix fan, and will gladly discuss at length the Hurricanes Super Rugby 2016 victory.

Chris Tennent-Brown

ASB Wealth Senior Economist

Chris has worked as an economist for ASB and Commonwealth Bank of Australia in Sydney since 2005. His work has involved monitoring and forecasting trends in the New Zealand economy, with a focus on drawing implications for financial markets and investments. Chris is passionate about savings issues, and much of his current work is focussed on broadening peoples understanding of investments. Chris obtained a Bachelor of Commence at Auckland University, majoring in Economics, and prior to joining ASB worked in the funds management industry for Bankers Trust and BT Funds Management. With over 20 years' experience in finance, Chris has also spent several years farming, and was a New Zealand representative cyclist. When not at work, Chris likes to travel, cycle, and spend time with his family and numerous pets.

Kim Mundy

Economist

Kim focuses on the subjects that have the ability to impact most people daily - the housing market, mortgage interest rates and inflation. She forecasts, analyses and provides insight into what these topics mean to readers: the pros and cons for particular mortgage rate options, housing affordability, or how to prepare for inflation. Kim is the author for ASB's Home Loan Rate Report, Home Economics and Housing Confidence Survey.

Kim joined ASB in early 2015 after working as an Economic Consultant. She also interned with the New Zealand Treasury while completing her BA/BCom (1st class honours) in Economics, Statistics and Politics.

Judith Pinto

Publication and Data Manager

Judith has a keen understanding of the data quality needs for the economics team. Responsible for ensuring data and charts are maintained to a high standard, Judith also offers her creative talent to ASB reports and acts as the "grammar police" as required. 

Having moved to New Zealand from the bustling city of Mumbai, India, Judith has a background in business journalism with global newswires Reuters and Dow Jones.  When she’s not at work, Judith enjoys spending time with her young family, baking and supporting their interests in art and music.  A trained violinist, she hopes to make a contribution to the Auckland music scene.