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South Africa after the unrest

There are signs that the worst of the violence and unrest that has gripped South Africa this week may be over. Any hit to economic activity is unlikely to be long-lasting but the risk that the government’s austerity plans are watered down has increased.
Jason Tuvey Senior Emerging Markets Economist
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Africa Economics Update

CBN finally steps up to curb inflation

The Central Bank of Nigeria delivered a surprise 150bp interest rate hike, to 13.00%, today amid mounting inflation and balance of payments concerns. We expect rates to be raised by another 100bp, to 14.00%, in July but further tightening seems unlikely especially as the 2023 elections come into view.

24 May 2022

Africa Data Response

Nigeria GDP (Q1)

Nigeria’s GDP growth slowed to 3.1% y/y in Q1 as robust growth in the non-oil sector was more than offset by a slump in the oil sector. Looser fiscal policy ahead of elections in early 2023 will provide some support to activity going forward, but continued weakness in oil production and disruptions caused by draconian FX policies underpin our below-consensus forecast for growth of 2.3% over 2022 as a whole.

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Markets and monetary policy, mounting pressure on naira

Recent investor risk-off sentiment has pushed up sovereign dollar bond yields across Sub-Saharan Africa, fuelling debt risks further, and has put currencies under pressure. Central banks appear to be taking note, with some policymakers turning tightening cycles up a notch. In Nigeria, the recent weakness of the currency on the black market was attributed to election-related spending, but the bigger issue is that downward pressure on the naira stems from the central bank’s unorthodox FX policies.

20 May 2022

More from Jason Tuvey

Emerging Europe Economics Update

CBRT in no rush to lower interest rates

Turkey’s central bank (CBRT) left interest rates on hold at 19.00% today and, with inflation set to rise further in July from a two-year high last month and the economy bouncing back quickly from the three-week lockdown in May, we think that an easing cycle is unlikely to begin until late this year.

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Africa Economics Update

Assessing the impact of the unrest in South Africa

There is clearly a lot of uncertainty over how the protests in South Africa in recent days will develop but there are reasons to think that the impact on economic activity will be towards the milder end of the spectrum. Perhaps a bigger risk is that the protests signal broader discontent with the current weakness of the economy, limiting the government’s ability to push through austerity and put the public debt position back on to a sustainable path.

13 July 2021

Emerging Europe Data Response

Turkey Industrial Production & Retail Sales (May)

Turkey’s activity figures for May, the month of a three-week national lockdown, showed that the industrial sector came through unscathed but that retail sales were hit hard. More timely evidence suggests that activity has rebounded quickly and, combined with the rise in inflation to a two-year high in June, means that the central bank will almost certainly leave interest rates unchanged tomorrow.

13 July 2021
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