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Business confidence ticks up from 20-year low

As business confidence languished near its weakest levels in two decades, the SA Reserve Bank insisted that cutting interest rates is not a remedy for the country’s economies woes that are threatening the loss of its remaining investment grade. While the central bank could act and provide some stimulus if there was a slack in growth, the extent to which ... Read More »

The company cashing in on South Africa’s minibus taxi industry

SA Taxi owner Transaction Capital published its results for the year ended September 2019, showing headline earnings growth of 18% despite South Africa’s strained operating environment characterised by low consumer and business confidence. SA Taxi grew headline earnings by 38% to R519 million and debt collection business, Transaction Capital Risk Services (TCRS), grew headline earnings by 15% to R313 million. ... Read More »

Rand gains as trade war news lifts market sentiment

The rand started the week on the front foot on Monday morning, as positive news on the US-China trade war boosted global market sentiment. News reports that China will raise penalties on intellectual property rights, which is one of the crucial topics discussed in the trade talks, renewed hope that the US and China may be moving closer to concluding ... Read More »

SARS goes to court to recover R200m lost through illicit tobacco trade in decade-old case

The South African Revenue Service has instituted a civil process to recover R200m it says was lost to the fiscus through the illicit tobacco trade. The tax agency’s executive head of customs and excise, Kumaran Moodley, and its acting head of digital information services technology, Intikhab Shaik, on Tuesday briefed Parliament’s Standing Committee on Finance on illicit tobacco trade. Moodley ... Read More »

Thousands of kilograms of Zim gold being smuggled into South Africa, says minister

Zimbabwe is losing thousands of kilograms of gold through smuggling into neighbouring South Africa, a senior Zimbabwe government official said this week. The precious metal is one of Zimbabwe’s biggest export earners. But production is being hampered by a lack of capital investment and repeated power cuts. Miners are also not happy with an arrangements that sees them being paid ... Read More »

Zuma: If the public protector wants my tax records, she must have them

Former president Jacob Zuma defended the public protector’s right to access his tax records in a series of tweets. Zuma was supposed to appear before the judicial commission of inquiry into state capture this week, but excused himself due to illness. Still, he has been busy on Twitter, defending public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane who is currently in a legal battle ... Read More »

Japan-South Africa business committee launched

Officials from Japan and South Africa are working together to help Japanese companies make the most of business opportunities. A signing ceremony for a new promotions committee was held in Johannesburg on Wednesday. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa was on hand to offer his support. “There can be no better time to invest in this dynamic, growing economy than now,” ... Read More »

Rand perks up after Moody’s reprieve

The rand was quoted stronger in early trading hours on Monday after the country clung to its last investment-grade credit rating. Moody’s Investors Service announced that it had decided not to downgrade the country’s credit score to junk, although it did reduce the outlook to negative. This came even after the country released forecasts last week that showed its financial ... Read More »

JSE led higher by Naspers as SA’s credit rating hangs in balance

The JSE firmed in broad-based gains on Thursday morning, led higher by a strong performance from Naspers, as investors continued to digest a gloomy budget statement. All eyes are now on Moody’s Investors Service, which will deliver its verdict on SA’s credit rating on Friday. On Wednesday, finance minister Tito Mboweni slashed SA’s growth outlook for 2019 and warned that ... Read More »

The area in finance where South Africa ranks number one in the world

South Africa is open for business and hopes to attract billions of rands worth of investment during the second annual South Africa Investment Conference (SAIC). Speaking ahead of the upcoming second conference, minister of Trade & Industry Ebrahim Patel said that over the past year, the government has made steady progress on making it easier to do business in South ... Read More »

South Africa has no energy crisis, says minister Gwede Mantashe

The Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) seems to be an acknowledgement by the government that it does not have the required skills capacity and the balance sheet to continue investing in the electricity-generating infrastructure of any significance. Thus it has designed a plan that heavily relies on the simplicity, cost-effectiveness and speed of the private sector to fill the gap. And ... Read More »

Woman arrested for allegedly attempting to smuggle drugs into Durban prison

The department of correctional services has warned the public against smuggling contraband into prisons, after a woman was arrested for alleged possession of drugs at a Durban facility at the weekend. “This comes after a visitor was arrested for attempting to smuggle 200 drug capsules hidden in her underwear at the Durban Correctional Centre,” said correctional services spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo. ... Read More »

Cyril Ramaphosa: We must make it easier to do business in South Africa

In everything that we do to grow our economy, our main aim must be to improve the lives of South Africans. We want to build an inclusive economy that has a real impact on the quality of life of poor and working-class people. As we work to create jobs and employment opportunities, we are also working to reduce the cost ... Read More »

August downturn makes SA equities even cheaper

August’s drop was due largely to external factors, such as further investor concerns over global growth due to an escalation in the US-China trade war and growing signs of slowdowns in the EU and China. At the same time, we saw some local developments also weighing on market sentiment and the rand. These included worries over the government’s growing National ... Read More »

Beware new email scam targeting South African businesses

The South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) is warning business banking customers about a new scam targeting local businesses. The scam is known as ‘Business Email Compromise’ (BEC) where criminals literally ‘steal money by asking for it’. This scam targets specific employees in organisations who are authorised to transfer funds or make payments. According to Mimecast’s State of Email ... Read More »

Woman bust for smuggling drugs into Durban prison in her underwear

A woman was bust trying to smuggle 200 “heroin” tablets into the Westville prison in her underwear. The woman, according to the correctional services ministry, was trying to get the drugs to an inmate she was visiting. “The drugs, which were 200 capsules suspected to be heroin, were hidden in the underwear of a visitor. Upon her being searched, they ... Read More »

Government to ban foreign business from ‘certain sectors’

The government is developing legislation that will bar foreign nationals from operating in certain sectors of the economy, a key member of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s cabinet revealed this week. Justice and Correctional Services Minister Ronald Lamola told a fundraising gala dinner hosted by the Kgalema Motlanthe Foundation on Thursday night that his small business development counterpart, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni, was developing ... Read More »

Saudi Arabia’s Freddie Mac plans sukuk to raise $267m

Saudi Real Estate Refinance Co, the kingdom’s first mortgage-refinancing firm, plans to raise as much as SR1 billion ($267 million) in Islamic bonds by the end of the year. The sale by the state-run equivalent of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the US would be its second this year and the company hasn’t decided whether it will be a ... Read More »

South African business experts pleased with trade mission to Angola

A group of South African business people have arrived home after a five-day outward trade and investment mission organised and funded by the department of trade and industry (dti) with the aim of assisting them seek a market for their products and services in Angola. The business people expressed their fulfilment with the level of exposure and outcomes the mission ... Read More »

Major banking strike planned for South Africa

South Africa’s biggest financial union is planning a major strike at the end of September 2019. Sasbo – which currently has over 73,000 members – will down tools at the end of the month in protest over planned retrenchments in the banking sector. The union wants banks to consider options other than retrenchments and begin a program to re-skill employees ... Read More »