South Africa: Private sector activity deteriorates in November
Business conditions in South Africa’s private sector remained in contractionary territory for the seventh month running in November. The IHS Markit Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) fell to 48.6 from 49.4 in October, thus moving further below the critical 50-threshold that separates contraction from expansion in private sector activity.
November’s deterioration reflected the sharpest fall in output in a year, as new orders continued to decline amid the poor economic and political sentiment. In turn, several firms reduced their staffing levels and postponed restocking. On the price front, input price inflation accelerated to a five-month high amid higher fuel and metal prices, as well as a weaker rand. Similarly, output prices rose again in November, although at a softer pace. Finally, business sentiment was broadly unchanged in the month.