South Africa PMI January 2017

South Africa

South Africa: South Africa's business activity expands at slower rate in January

February 3, 2017

The Standard Bank Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) inched down from 51.6 in December—a 21-month high—to 51.3 in January. The PMI remained above the 50-mark, but January’s mild decline suggests a moderation in the pace of growth in South Africa’s business activity.

January’s result stemmed from slower growth in new orders and production due to a contraction in exports. On a positive note, as client demand remained healthy domestically, businesses increased their staff numbers, which led to a seventh consecutive month of job creation. Meanwhile, supplier delivery times lengthened for the first time in three months in January. In terms of price developments, South African businesses continued to face high input prices, particularly due to a weak currency.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists see investment falling 2.0% in 2017, which is down 1.2 percentage points from last month’s estimate. For 2018, the panel expects investment to increase 1.5%.


Author:, Senior Economist

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SouthAfrica PMI January 2017

Note: Standard Bank Purchasing Managers’ Index. Readings above 50 indicate an improvement in business conditions while readings below 50 point to a deterioration.
Source: Standard Bank


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