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Could February change South Africa’s financial outlook for 2019

Could February change South Africa’s financial outlook for 2019

2018 was a tumultuous year laden with events that shook the market in so much that it yielded negative double-digit returns. Over the last 58 years, this has only happened on the JSE All Share Index during seven calendar years, including 1969/70 and 1975/76 where this occurred in consecutive years.
\This begs the question: will history repeat itself? Should we brace for another negative year or are we faced with an opportunity to buy at lower prices?

While there is no way of predicting the outcome of the market for 2019, we can highlight some of the important events which may influence on stock market returns either negatively or positively. Let’s unpack some of these key events to watch in 2019 that may affect the market.

An election year that may be a turning point for South Africa

One could naively argue that elections are political and not financial events, but the reality is that the lead up to and the outcome of the national elections in May this year will carry economic significance. Raging issues, such as the land expropriation debate and effective financial budgeting on the part of National Treasury will need to be addressed during this time. Both global and local investors will be encouraged by a perceived business-friendly outcome and equally discouraged by any uncertainty in the outcome of the elections, as will the ratings agencies that are keeping a close eye on SA.