Corin Dann: 'He is looking very alone tonight' - five leading economists dismiss Steven Joyce's claim Labour has $11.7 billion hole in fiscal plan

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National Party finance spokesman Steven Joyce's claim yesterday that Labour’s spending plan has a $11.7 billion hole in it has been dismissed by a number of New Zealand’s top economists.

1 NEWS political editor Corin Dann has spoken to four leading economists who say Mr Joyce's accusations are wrong.
Source: 1 NEWS

Steven Joyce doubled down on his claim today saying "either Labour have their budget allowances wrong or they’ve left out billions and billions of dollars of government spending in future years from their plan".

It comes after calls Labour’s number do add up, despite Mr Joyce saying there was a $11.7 billion hole.
Source: 1 NEWS

But, Labour is adamant there is no $11.7 billion hole in its finances and plenty of senior economists who have looked at Labour’s plan agree.

The Labour leader came out swinging, saying Mr Joyce should "correct the record".
Source: 1 NEWS

Those spoken to by 1 NEWS today include ANZ chief economist Cameron Bagrie, Christina Leung from the NZIER, Eric Crampton from the New Zealand Initiative and independent economist Shamubeel Eaqub.

Most of those say Labour's spending plan does looks tight and that it will be a challenge to accommodate any new spending commitments in the future.

However, none of them believe there is an $11.7 billion hole in the plan.

"He is looking very alone tonight," 1 NEWS political editor Corin Dann said of Mr Joyce. 

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