Labour leader Andrew Little's state of the nation speech: 10 things to know
Labour's new leader Andrew Little was set to get in ahead of Prime Minister John Key and deliver his 'state of the nation' speech early this morning.
Here's a rough guide of what to expect and how to interpret it.
❏ Expect to hear lots about inequality, unemployment and income - solid Labour stuff and familiar territory for the former union boss.
❏ The median income from wages and salaries across all jobs (full time and part time) in June 2014 was about $45,000 a year (or $865 a week) before tax. The full-time median income was about $51,000 ($989 a week).
❏ In the year to June 2014, the median weekly income from all sources (for all people) increased by $25.
❏ One of Andrew Little's first political acts was as a 10-year-old, delivering leaflets for the local National party candidate.
❏ Little may claim - as his Labour colleagues before him have - that unemployment today is 32,000 higher than when Key took office. This is a net figure and does not take into account any increases in population, or changes in the make-up of population, such a people retiring.
❏ Little may also note official data which shows that only 57 per cent of all workers received an pay rise last. Since 2005, this figure has rarely gone over 60 percent and it was as low as the mid-40s in 2009 and 2010.
❏ Little was set to be the third Labour leader to deliver a state of the nation speech since 2008. David Shearer opted not to do them when he was in charge.
❏ Little may raise questions about the Government's fiscal management. On the latest statistics, the deficit was tracking $121 million better than forecast for the five months to November.
❏ In June last year, net core Crown debt was $59.9 billion. By December 16, it had risen to $62 billion. By the end of this financial year, it's forecast to have risen to nearly $63.5 billion.
❏ Some of the most famous state of the nation speeches have been delivered at the Orewa Rotary Club. It was the venue for Sir Robert Muldoon's legendary addresses - his first, in 1967, was delivered wearing shorts and a Hawaiian print shirt. In recent times it was the venue for then-National leader Don Brash's controversial "nationhood" speech.