The New Zealand Herald's Matt Nippert won the news category in the EY business journalism awards, announced today.

NZ Listener journalist Rebecca Macfie won the features category and the overall EY Journalist of the Year award, The NBR's Tim Hunter won the commentary section and Hamish McNicol won the young journalist category.

It was Nippert's second win in a row for news. He was also last year's EY Business Journalist of Year.

Former chairman of EY New Zealand and former EY Oceania chief Rob McLeod said Nippert's entry on international tax avoidance demonstrated his ability to research complex facts and figures, and reveal their bare essentials and have them underpin conversations with diverse stakeholder from all sides of the debate.


"Each article condensed complex subject matter into an interesting and accessible piece for readers," he said. "Using diverse stakeholders gave Matt's articles balance and put education before advocacy. We suspect the articles had material impact."

Macfie's winning portfolio entry included an investigation on the dairy sector crisis and an expose on slum rental housing in Christchurch.

Judge panelist and Massey University Press publishing director Nicola Legat said Macfie's work humanises business and economic stories.

"In her hands, the financial becomes the political but she resists the temptation to conduct advocacy journalism," she said. "Macfie is steady, sharp, thorough, intelligent, independent and fair."

The prize for EY Business Journalist of the Year includes $1000 in cash and a five-day digital journalism course at the University of California at Berkeley, United States.

Among the finalists were five New Zealand Herald journalists including Anne Gibson, Holly Ryan, Matt Nippert, Liam Dann and Christopher Adams.