South African private sector activity slips to 17-month low in Sept: PMI

October 4, 2017
Source: Reuters
South African private sector activity slips to 17-month low in Sept: PMI

South African private sector activity shrank at the fastest rate in 17 months in September as output, new orders and employment declined, a survey showed on Wednesday.

The Standard Bank Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), compiled by Markit, fell to 48.5 last month from 49.8 in August, moving further below the 50 mark that separates growth in activity from contraction.

The September print was the lowest since April 2016. ”Stagflationary stress characterised the PMI survey in September: measures of actual growth and expectations of future

growth deteriorated, while measures of inflation rose,” Standard Bank economist Kim Silberman said.

“Rising costs of doing business are expected to put pressure on private sector margins as well as consumer inflation, as the burden is shared between producer and consumer”.

Africa’s most industrialised economy emerged from a recession in the second quarter. But Finance Minister Malusi

Gigaba has said the economy was in danger of missing its 1.3 percent growth target in 2017 due to the poor performance of some major sectors.

Allegations of widespread corruption and the raiding of taxpayer funds by outside interests have also dented investor confidence in the economy.