Rate Hike looms in light of Rand Weakness
The Rand’s plunge to the weakest in almost seven months against the dollar may push up South African inflation and necessitate interest-rate increases, SARB Deputy Governor Kuben Naidoo, currently in Portugal, said. While the SA Reserve Bank (SARB) doesn’t target a specific level of the rand, it responds to second-round effects on prices from currency weakness. “If we do think there is a risk of second-round effects, we will have to act,” he said. Inflation was 4.5% in April, in the middle of the central bank’s target range. “But if it rises and if it’s forecast for rise, we will have to act.”
The Reserve Bank held its key rate at 6.5% last month after cutting in July and March, citing the cost of oil and wage increases as risks to th…
YOUTH DAY ... and what it stands for
On June 16, 1976, a demonstration in Soweto, led largely by high school students angered at the apartheid government, was met with a brutal crackdown by police and set off a wave of protests and violent conflicts across South Africa. The day is now immortalised as Youth Day, an annual public holiday in which South Africans remember the significance of the Soweto uprisings and the bravery of those involved, as well as the importance of supporting the youth across the country.
Construction has begun on R 3bn Smart Eco City "Sandton Gate"
Construction on Sandton’s new ZAR 3 billion smart eco-city, Sandton Gate, has begun, with co-developers Abland and Tiber Construction breaking ground on the first phase.
According to Abland, the first phase of the development will see the construction of over 30,000 square metres of mixed-use space, including premium-grade office space, a residential block and amenities like a gym.
The commercial and residential components will also be developed over this period.
The Sandton Gate precinct is envisioned as an eco-friendly smart mini-city, that will serve as a commercial and residential hub within the greater Sandton area.
It will be located on William Nicol Drive, in the middle of four commercial nodes, namely Sandton CBD, Bry…
Another huge Petrol Price Hike on the Cards
South Africans can expect a massive increase in the fuel price when they fill up at the pumps next week, thanks mainly to rising international oil prices. Brent crude oil traded at around US$ 76 on Tuesday, having peaking above $80 earlier in the month, and with analysts noting that prices could head toward $100 a barrel.
Rising oil prices, in tandem with a softer Rand in May, means that the fuel price is expected to edge closer to ZAR 16 per litre to new record highs in June.
The latest date from the Central Energy Fund shows that the petrol price is likely to increase by around 85 cents, with diesel up 85 cents, and paraffin by 83 cents in a month when more is consumed.
Commenting on unaudited mid-month fuel price data release…
Interest Rates remain unchanged
The monetary policy committee of the South African Reserve Bank has decided to keep the repo rate unchanged at 6.5%, in line with the expectations of economists. At its previous meeting in March the MPC decided to cut interest rates by 25 basis points to make the repo rate 6.5%, and the prime lending rate 10%. The repo rate is the benchmark interest rate at which the central bank lends money to commercial banks and the prime rate the rate at which commercial banks lend money to borrowers.
SARB governor Lesetja Kganyago said the decision to keep the repo rate unchanged was unanimous: "At [6.5%], the MPC still assesses the stance of monetary policy to be accommodative and appropriate given the forecast inflation trajectory and the curre…
Will Ramaphosa succeed to unite the ANC?
President Cyril Ramaphosa may have won the battle to lead the African National Congress, but the war to fully control the ruling party is threatening his drive for structural policy change.
Ramaphosa’s shaky hold over the party became clear when he had to use his government authority this month to take control of North West province after the ANC failed to force Premier Supra Mahumapelo from office following protests in the region. While Mahumapelo took a leave of absence, faction fighting is also rampant in areas such as KwaZulu-Natal, where Jacob Zuma enjoys widespread support following his February resignation as president.
“Ramaphosa as the president of the ANC faces a huge battle in terms of uniting the party,” said Zakhele Nd…
Maimane scolds ANC and EFF for Land Expropriation Course
Leader of the Democratic Alliance (DA), Mmusi Maimane, said land expropriation without compensation was nothing more than a gambit by the African National Congress (ANC), ahead of the 2019 General Election. Maimane, speaking at a Freedom Day celebration in Soshanguve yesterday, said the ANC and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) could not stop talking about land expropriation at the moment, adding that all of their commentary on their subject was mere bluster. He said South Africans should not allow the wool to be pulled over their eyes.
The Leader of the Opposition said the expropriation of land without compensation would not bring economic freedom to the majority of South Africans, adding that the DA was the only party with a legit…
Costliest G20 Country to send Money from
South Africa is the costliest G20 country to send remittances from, according to the latest World Bank report on remittance prices. In its analysis of trends in remittance service costs, the World Bank said South Africa remains the costliest G20 country to send remittances from in spite of an overall decrease from its peak in the first quarter of 2013, when the cost of sending money from South Africa was more than 20%.
In its report for the first quarter of 2018, the World Bank said remitting from South Africa incurred an average cost of 17.13%.
Japan comes in second, with the cost of sending money at 9.82%.
Russia remains the least expensive G20 country to send money from at 1.64%, followed by Brazil at 4.93% and the *Un…
Ramaphosa announced Investment Conference to attract 1 Trillion Rand Investments over 5 Years
President Cyril Ramaphosa announced on Monday evening that South Africa would host a major investment conference in August or September 2018, which would aim to raise over R1trn in new investments over five years.
“The investment conference, which will involve domestic and international investors in equal measure, is not intended merely as a forum to discuss the investment climate,” said Ramaphosa, according to his prepared notes. He was speaking at OR Tambo International Airport, before leaving for a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London.
“Rather, we expect the conference to report on actual investment deals that have been concluded and to provide a platform for would-be investors to seek out opportunities in the Sou…
South African Airways: Gordhan to the Rescue?
In February, a few hours after the announcement that Pravin Gordhan would be sworn in as South Africa’s new public enterprises minister, he described himself in a radio interview as a “used car”, in reference to his various government deployments by the ANC over the years.It’s clear Gordhan has a reputation as a “Mr Fix-It”, and he didn’t hesitate to place the “rampant corruption” that has infested South Africa’s state-owned entities (SOEs) at the top of his to-do list.
Reform of SOEs was also a major theme in both President Cyril Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation Address and in former finance minister Malusi Gigaba’s Budget Speech.The South African public is very aware that SOEs are a crucial part of our economy and our fiscal system…