A vendor waits for customers at his store inside an African craft market in the Rosebank district of Johannesburg, South Africa (Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg)  

South African Business Confidence Declines to Five-Month Low

(Bloomberg) -- South African business confidence fell to a five-month low in February.

The index dropped to 93.4 in February to from 95.1 in the previous month, the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry said in an emailed statement Wednesday.

While sentiment jumped to a two-year high in early 2018 after President Cyril Ramaphosa won the leadership of the ruling African National Congress and the country, confidence has waned as businesses seek reforms. Fixed investment declined in every quarter of 2018 as the economy grew 0.8 percent for the year, Statistics South Africa said Tuesday.

South African Business Confidence Declines to Five-Month Low

“South African economy faces serious challenges,” the chamber said. “These challenges are now deeply entrenched and need to be handled with urgency and care. The upcoming elections do not only serve as an opportunity to establish credible representation, but also provide a platform to come to a rational and sustainable economic policy framework that carries the support of the business community.”

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