Positive inflation surprise raises hope of a rate cut
By Sunita Menon - Mar 20th 2018, 14:30
Consumer inflation slowed to 4% in February — from 4.4% in January, and beating economists’ consensus of 4.2%.
The better than expected inflation figure raises hope that the Reserve Bank’s monetary policy committee will cut interest rates on March 28.
At 4%, inflation is well contained within the Bank’s target range of keeping inflation above 3% but below 6%.
Investec economist Lara Hodes correctly forecast that February’s inflation would moderate to 4%.
"The key influencing factors for the February outcome are expected to be the food and fuel price components. Fuel price pressures subsided in February, with petrol and diesel prices dipping by 30c and 17c a litre respectively," she said.
The fuel component of the consumer price index (CPI) fell 1.8% from January to February.
Statistics SA reported on Tuesday that the CPI rose to 105.8 points in February from 105 points in January. The index was set to 100 points in December 2016.
Bread and cereal prices fell 5.1% in February from the same month in 2017, according to Stats SA.
Other components of CPI to register deflation were fruit, which fell on average by 4.3%; oils and fats, which fell 2.7%; furniture, which became 4.1% cheaper over the year; and appliances, which fell 2.1%.
Meat was 11.4% more expensive than a year ago.
© BusinessLIVE MMXVIII
4 reasons to be hopeful about South Africa’s economy
12/09/2019 - 14:40
Markets responded positively to South Africa’s economic growth rebounding in the second quarter, up 3.1%, and 0.9% for the year to June 2019.
Smarter mobility key to a sustainable South Africa
11/09/2019 - 13:19
The World Economic Forum has revealed that by 2050, 70% of the world’s population will be living and operating in urban areas. Considering the resultant congestion and air pollution, which are already challenges requiring mitigation in 2019, mobility and energy should be top of mind for those making the shift towards cities of the future.
Manufacturing production shrinks for second month in July
11/09/2019 - 13:01
Manufacturing production recorded its second consecutive contraction in July, in line with analysts’ expectations.
Eskom: The largest threat to the stability of the SA economy
10/09/2019 - 09:45
On Tuesday 23 July, South African Finance Minister Tito Mboweni tabled a bill before the National Assembly which would see national state-owned power utility Eskom benefit from an allocation of R59 billion over the next three years.
African continental free-trade deal has a long way to go
09/09/2019 - 14:50
The African continental free-trade agreement (AfCFTA) is facing several challenges and it could be decades before there is a common market in which tariffs are largely abolished.