Mixed South African economic signals as business confidence falters

Source: Ed Stoddard, Daily Maverick, 11 March 2021, photo credit: Bloomburg/Finacial Times

The RMB/BER Business Confidence Index (BCI) faltered again this quarter, highlighting the perilous state of South Africa’s economy. But the February reading of the BankservAfrica Economic Transaction Index (BETI) suggests some green shoots. 

Seven out of 10 senior South African business executives are dissatisfied with prevailing business conditions. This is according to the latest RMB BCI, which is based on a survey of around 1,300 executives. The BCI declined to 35 from 40 in the previous quarter, when six out of 10 executives were bearish about the local business environment. 

RMB said the survey “was conducted mainly during the second half of February when the peak of the second wave of COVID-19 infections had passed, and certain restrictions (such as the complete ban on alcohol sales and access to beaches) were already lifted. Load-shedding was also less pronounced during the survey period. That confidence failed to improve further is therefore telling.”
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The South African Pork Producers’ Organisation (SAPPO) coordinates industry interventions and collaboratively manages risks in the value chain to enable the sustainability and profitability of pork producers in South Africa.