Strikes hit factory output

2012-11-08 14:01

Johannesburg - Manufacturing output tumbled to its worst level in six months in September, mainly because of strikes which started in the mining sector, surprising economists who had not expected such a big fall.

Output contracted 1.1% year-on-year in September, while August manufacturing was revised 0.2 percentage points lower to a 2.8% expansion, Statistics South Africa said on Thursday.

Economists polled by Reuters had expected output to fall 0.5% in September.

"The industrial strikes have begun to take their toll on domestic figures," said Anisha Arora, emerging markets analyst at 4Cast.

"Strike action rapidly spread from mining to manufacturing and even the services sector well into October, closing plants and operations for weeks and resulting in vast losses of production volumes."

Manufacturing contributes about 15% of gross domestic product and is a major employer in a country where over 25% of the labour force is without jobs.

Official statistics last week showed 197 000 more people had lost jobs in the third quarter of this year.

On a month-on-month basis Statistics South Africa said production fell by a seasonally adjusted 2.3% but grew slightly by 0.3% in the three months to September compared with the previous quarter.

The Kagiso PMI, a key manufacturing indicator ahead of official statistics, has contracted since September and fell to its lowest level in over a year in October, pointing to a bleak outlook for the sector.

  • hitting.thefan - 2012-11-08 14:20

    We are already low in the productivity charts,now we loose time due to strikes. This country seriesly needs a economic Codessa because it seems S.A. workers and bosses do not understand there place in the whole equation. Well the flip side of the coin is maybe if the worst happens the ANC supporters will finally turn on them and hold them accountable!

      alan.jerrold - 2012-11-08 14:35

      Yep, the only lesson that will make an impact here is people losing their jobs and income because it becomes more expensive to make/produce an item than to sell it. Simple economics, but obviously not understood.

      daniel.jacobs.3766 - 2012-11-08 14:39

      Production directly relates to Work. I rest my case.

  • george.larkins.14 - 2012-11-08 14:52

    I Wish that the ANC support fall harder as these statistics.Maybe then we CAN move forward.Can not believe the majority of our population is so stupid to vote for these CORRUPT MORONS.

  • strikeback.strikeback - 2012-11-08 15:25

    My earlier post on News24 regarding well disciplined and skilled workers needed for improving manufacturing output has just been confirmed by this article. SA down and China up with 9.2%. If we want to make progress, we need to roll up our sleeves and get working. If we keep up with the current status quo and strike every time the weather changes, we will make no progress. Stop the strikes now and remove unproductive, unskilled workers from the system.

      george.larkins.14 - 2012-11-08 16:30

      Strikeback,Cannot agree more.

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