Decision on New Zealand leader delayed by at least 2 days

New Zealanders must wait at least two more days before finding out who will lead their country after a small political party delayed its decision.

The main conservative and liberal parties are competing to form a government after an election last month ended with an inconclusive result.

Crucial to the negotiations is the small New Zealand First party, led by maverick lawmaker Winston Peters. He'd earlier said he'd make a decision by Thursday.

But on Thursday he said any decision would need to be ratified by his party's board, which would meet Saturday at the earliest and possibly Sunday or Monday.

Prime Minister Bill English's conservative National Party won the most votes in the election. Jacinda Ardern's liberal Labour Party retains hope it can form the next government.