Muted house price growth in 2019; demand-supply gap narrowing.
The adverse impact of load-shedding has been quite a hot topic lately, with its increased implementation in recent weeks. The FNB Economics team has therefore carried out an exercise to quantify the impact of load-shedding on business. While the outlook for economic growth remains dim, we are cautiously optimistic about some of the potential developments in the utilities sector. According to Stats SA consumer prices jumped to 4.5% y/y in January 2020, from a modest 4% in December 2019.
President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered his fourth State of the Nation Address on Thursday night. The speech focused on addressing the current energy crisis, the unemployment crisis and structural impediments to faster economic growth. Finance Minister Tito Mboweni will deliver the 2020 annual Budget Speech on 26 February. So far, the latest YTD monthly government budget data indicates some revenue under-collection. Encouragingly, some restraint is evident on the expenditure side, as outcomes remain largely within budget. Unemployment remained unchanged at 29.1% in 4Q19. Looking at the December 2019 figures, manufacturing production plummeted by 5.9% y/y, retail sales declined by 0.4% y/y and mining production increased by 1.8% y/y.
The latest deeds data shows that homeowners are holding onto their property for much longer than they were 10 to 20 years ago. The average holding period has consistently increased since 2009 across all income groups in South Africa. The average holding period estimate is based on sales from the previous year, using the latest sold date and the previous sold date to establish for how many years a property has been held between each transaction.
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