A sharp turnaround in migration is going to put a lot of pressure on the housing market.
New Zealand had a seasonally adjusted net gain (more arrivals than departures) of 3000 migrants in October 2013.
The last time net migration was this high was more than 10 years ago, in June 2003.
The net gain has increased in recent months due to fewer people departing to live in Australia, as well as more arriving migrants.
ASB chief economist Nick Tuffley said some of those migrants would provide the skills that would be desperately needed in the Christchurch rebuild, and in Auckland where construction supply has been lagging demand. "But wherever they settle, there will be more pressure on the housing market."
He said the fact that fewer people were migrating to Australia and more were returning was having a big impact.