Johannesburg – Over the past couple of months the Gauteng
economy has stopped dragging its feet and is showing a slow rise.
In October the Sake24 and BoE Private Clients Gauteng
Barometer firmed 0.2%; it is now 9.2% up on the year before and 1% better than
three months previously.
The barometer's compiler, Mike Schüssler of
Economists.co.za, said it is encouraging that the Gauteng economy is again
generally doing better.
In October the barometer's trade index was 9.4% higher than
a year ago, after improving 4.9%. Schüssler said it is astonishing that the
trade index is doing so well.
The trade index is compiled from vehicle, petrol, retail and
wholesale sales. This year it has been boosted especially by strong vehicle
sales, which in October were 22% up on a year ago.
October petrol sales, too, were at the same level as the
corresponding time last year, despite large hikes in the petrol price.
But Schüssler is disappointed with the performance of
Gauteng's mining sector, especially considering the strength of the gold price
this year. The barometer's October mining index was 11.6% down on the year
Schüssler said the primary sectors in South Africa –
agriculture and mining – are experiencing the greatest uncertainty.
"This year the gold price was the highest in history,
and the fact that mining could not improve in tandem points to
He saids higher commodity prices, however, gave Gauteng's
transport industry a boost because it was able to benefit from hauling
commodities from the rest of Africa.
The Gauteng barometer's index for storage, transport and
communications rose 2% in October and was 19% up year-on-year (y/y).
Communications' contribution to this index is sourced from
The indices for land and air transport in Gauteng were 13.8%
and 1.8% up y/y respectively.
The Gauteng economic stress index lifted 0.6% in October,
and the economy is now under slightly more pressure than it was last year
because of high inflation. The province's inflation rate is currently 5.9%,
just under the national average of 6%.
The Gauteng government expenditure index fell 0.9% in
October and is now 3.8% down on a year ago. However, the government still spent
11.5% more than in October last year.
"Government spending still largely goes on salaries and
not infrastructure, but infrastructure is what we need in Gauteng," said
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