This short, powerful video explains how the financialisation of New Zealand’s economy, aided by banks’ money creation and lending practices, have led to the poor economic and social consequences we now see.

Featuring leading economics experts: Auckland University Professor Jane Kelsey, Hive News publisher Bernard Hickey, economics commentator and author Peter Lyons, former Reserve Bank of NZ special advisor Michael Reddell, and Positive Money NZ Patron and former UK MP and Shadow Secretary for Trade and Industry Bryan Gould.

A Wealth of Illusion is an economics documentary that examines the financialisation New Zealand’s economy since the 1980s. This radical transition saw an almost complete reversal from the manufacturing sector of the economy to the financial sector. The implications of this we are now feeling as increasing inequality, crippling private debt, and economic instability.

At the core of the film is the issue of money creation by private banks: the ability to create money when making loans. In New Zealand 97% of all money is bank created debt. The central question is, to what extent should this extraordinary power be given to profit-seeking private entities?

We look at the link between money creation and housing inflation. In NZ between 1988 and 2008 the money supply rose 409%, during the same time house prices rose 421%.

We ask NZ’s leading economists and financial commentators about how we could find a more stable and fair future. By taking a look back at times of economic stability in New Zealand, particularly in the mid 20th century, we may understand solutions for an increasingly uncertain future. We also examine new alternatives to the monetary system that could help even-out a world where economic crises have become expected.

Video produced by New Zealand filmmaker Marcus Palmer.