Rand in free Fall showing no Resilience
The South African Rand was unable to capitalise on a broad-based US Dollar sell-off last week, ending the five daily sessions flat on aggregate after losses towards the end of the week unwound Monday and Tuesday’s gains.
Since then, however, the local unit has come under immense selling pressure this morning, breaking above the 16.00/US$ and almost breaking through the 19.00/EUR barrier for the first time since early 2016 amid global financial market chaos. Equities and other high-risk assets across the world have plummeted this morning as panic selling set in, with traders showing grave concern over the potential economic impact of the COVID-19 virus epidemic while simultaneously digesting a free-fall in oil prices after Saudi Arab…
Moody's reduces Growth Forecast
Rating agency Moody’s has cut South Africa’s growth forecast from 0.7% to 0.4% for 2020, on the back of the global coronavirus outbreak.
“The global spread of the coronavirus is resulting in simultaneous supply and demand shocks,” Moody’s said in a global research report.
This, in turn, will impact South Africa’s growth prospects, it said.
Other economists have forecast similar drops on the back of the virus – particularly due to the impact of the virus on China, where it first broke out.
China is South Africa’s biggest trade partner, and its expected growth of 6% for the year has been forecast to be as low as 4.8% because of the virus’ impact on trade and manufacturing in the market.
According to PwC, for every percent Ch…
Internet Access about to be fully restored
Rejoice! The cable breaks along the west coast of Africa which left South Africans with slow internet connectivity should hopefully be repaired by today.
Initial repair delays
The issue has been ongoing since January, and repairs were initially halted due to weather conditions preventing the repair vessel from setting sail.
On 21 January, REN Alerts confirmed that the vessel was still docked, but would be able to depart the following day. While that sounded wonderful, the vessel would still take a week to reach its destination, and another week for repairs to be carried out.
Since then, SA’s main internet providers were forced to purchase additional international bandwidth to keep us connected to the rest of the world. It’s a…
Interest Rates drop by 0.25%
In its first meeting in 2020, the Monetary Policy Committee of the South African Reserve Bank has unanimously decided to cut the Repo Rate by 0.25% from 6.50% down to 6.25%. This translates into the prime lending rate of South Africa finally dropping out of the two-digit realm and being now 9.75%
This is a welcome break for all home loan debtors in these challenging times.
Failure @ Government .co.za
The departments of government have in 2019 – more than ever before – across the board and for reasons beyond any comprehension discontinued to fulfil their mandates to administrate and serve the public, us, the residents of South Africa. Here are some “Downlights” of the last year, which can leave one only speechless, frustrated and in awe of the shenanigans this circus has served us as politics. Let’s rewind and review what our "government” was up to last year:
FINANCE: SARS’ Vat Fraud
Already in October 2018 SARS admitted to a four-year backlog of VAT Refunds, totalling a staggering ZAR 20 billion in VAT refunds owed to companies. Former and current senior SARS officials, who have appeared at the Nugent commission of…
Vice President embarrasses Nation by defending Load Shedding as a Sign of Growth
Deputy president David Mabuza’s take on the electricity crisis left many South Africans in utter disbelief.
“The shortage of electricity is a sign of growth.”
Mabuza made this remark in parliament on Wednesday while responding to questions on youth unemployment and the fourth industrial revolution.
“Yesterday, electricity was only given to a few people. Today, electricity is given to millions of people … this economy is growing and therefore we are bound to have challenges. These challenges are very positive because they propel our growth,” he said.
Mabuza’s comments coincided with Eskom’s announcement on Wednesday that there was a possibility of load-shedding on Thursday. "Deputy president, I’m sure you’ll agree with…
The Rise and Fall of FNB - More erratic Account Closures
Following our recent summary of the current policy of FNB to get rid of customers who complain about lack of service or demand rectification of erroneous banking fees levied, the policy of the current Board to terminate all accounts that are inconvenient continues.
In a most recent wave of account closures it now hit also prominent cryptocurrency dealers such as LUNO, ICE3X and VALR and their accounts – although being maintained without flaw – have been terminated, causing a significant inconvenience for those customers, who funded their Cryptocurrency Accounts through their FNB Bank Account.
Official reason is – please do not laugh but the creative team for bogus reasons seems to run out of fake excuses:
_FirstRand Bank ha…
Moody's downgrades Outlook to "negative"
On today’s meeting Moody’s has decided to keep the country one notch above investment grade, changing its outlook on the country’s credit rating from stable to negative, but leaving it a “Life Line” as it requires at least one investment grade – from either Moody’s or Standard & Poor" to remain on the FTSE World Government Bond Index. Exiting it would spark an investor selloff and outflows of as much as $15 billion (R200bn), according to Bank of New York Mellon at a time when South Africa needs portfolio investment to finance its persistent current-account deficit. A downgrade would also raise borrowing costs, complicating the government’s efforts to balance the budget.
For a quarter-century, South Africa has been able to count on an …
Load Shedding could have been prevented for Joburg, but ESKOM deliberately derailed Plan
The Plot thickens! It seems it is not only an inability to plan and manage power in South Africa which ESKOM needs to be accused of, but also to sacrifice the well-being through access to electricity of all residents only to create electricity charges, which are overpriced and ill-called for.
Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba has launched a scathing attack on Eskom, claiming that the state-run power utility is preventing a solution that could ensure no load-shedding for Johannesburg citizens. In a column on PoliticsWeb, Mashaba said that the City of Johannesburg received a letter in December 2018 from Eskom which rejected the city’s request to nullify its load-shedding issues by using power that is independently generated by the Kelvi…
ESKOM INCOMPETENCE SAGA (Part 147): Loadshedding is Back!
It comes at no surprise that – once Gwede Mantashe – NEC spiritus rector and now Top Honcho of the Department of Energy has taken the reins over this crucial infrastructure ministry – load shedding will be back. What does he know about electricity? What does he care as long as he keeps the NEC together to condone corruption and nepotism in “his” sectors of mineral resources and power? He doesn’t, as long as the state coffers are accessible for plunder by his goons and as long as he personally has diesel in his generator and solar PV on the roof.
The reality keeps up with this as stage 2 load shedding will take place from 9am to 11pm on Wednesday 16 October 2019, and is expected to last for at least a week. Eskom’s official Twitter a…