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What to expect from the financial week ahead

Sep 25 2017 06:00

Cape Town - There’s a fair bit of data coming out this week despite it being a shortened week, according to Mamello Matikinca, FNB senior economist.

The release of July tourism and migration figures have been pushed out to Wednesday, which will also see the release of the FNB/BER Civil Construction Confidence Index.

August PPI (producer price index) will be published on Thursday along with the Quarterly Employment Survey for the second quarter of 2017.

Trade figures and credit extension data for August will be out on Friday.

Matikinca points out that PPI has been decelerating steadily throughout most of 2017 and should continue to ease modestly in August from July’s 3.6% year-on-year (y/y).

"Factory gate price pressure remains benign given exceptionally weak domestic demand, and easing food prices, which make up a quarter of the PPI basket, should continue to keep the reading subdued," said Matikinca.

"We think meat prices have likely peaked. Despite some of the nearly fifty thousand jobs she in 1Q17 being due to seasonal factors, it nevertheless made for grim reading. We expect the figures for the second quarter of 2017 to be slightly better given that economic growth bounced back by 2.5% quarter-on-quarter (q/q) in the quarter."

The Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) has already shown unemployment to have remained steady at 27.7% in the quarter, but FNB expects there to have been modest job gains amongst most of the sectors that recorded positive real growth in the quarter.

"Trade figures for August typically record a deficit (as they have for every year since 2011) which partly reflect seasonal imports ahead of the December sales period," said Matikinca.

"Given the slightly better consumption data from the Stats SA GDP release, we expect this trend to continue, although the size of the deficit is unlikely to be large. Credit extension growth is likely to have eased again in August, as bank, consumer and corporate appetite for debt remains muted."

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