Fin24

Hide the credit card

2011-11-11 07:40

Johannesburg - Consumers should spend their money wisely over the festive season, the SA Savings Institute (Sasi) said on Thursday.

"We are asking South Africans to take a sober assessment of their expenditure during this festive season," Sasi chairperson Prem Govender said in a statement at the launch of Sasi's festive season savings campaign.

She said there was increasing concern about consumers' short-sightedness about saving, which was compromising South Africa's long-term savings and investment.

"With our country's gross savings rate averaging 15% over the past decade, it's not surprising that investment as a proportion of GDP (gross domestic product) stood at 19% in 2010, when at least 25% is required to achieve and sustain high growth rates," she said.

Consumers' debt servicing, income and savings vulnerabilities had increased since Sasi's 2010 festive savings campaign.

"Of the 18.8 million (53.3%) credit active consumers, about 8.8 million (46.7%) have impaired records while more than 278 000 have applied for debt counselling," she said.

Govender encouraged consumers to budget for the festive season, to avoid buying on impulse and to resist "sale" signs, and to budget for next year's school requirements.