New Zealand's service sector saw its highest level of activity in nine months in July, according to the latest performance of services index (PSI).
The BNZ-Business New Zealand PSI for July was 58.1, on a scale where above 50 indicates expansion and below 50 contraction, which was up 3 points from June and compared with an average 55.7 for the year to date.
It was the highest level of activity since October 2012 and the highest July result since the survey began in 2007.
Craig Ebert, senior economist at BNZ, said the latest PSI added to numerous signs that the economic expansion is now accelerating.
"Indeed, the chances of getting 5 percent gross domestic product (GDP) growth over the coming 12 months cannot be taken lightly," Ebert said in a statement.
All five main sub-indices were in expansion in July, with new orders/business on 63.1, activity/sales on 61.8, supplier deliveries on 57.3, stocks/inventories on 54.9, and employment on 52.2.
The GDP-weighted performance of composite index, which combines the performance of manufacturing index and the PSI, for July rose 3.1 points from June to 58.3.