South Africa Factory Output Grows at Slowest Pace in Six Months

(Bloomberg) -- South African manufacturing output increased at the slowest pace in six months in September.

Production expanded 0.1 percent from a year earlier, Pretoria-based Statistics South Africa said in a statement Thursday. That’s less than the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey for a 1.9 percent increase.

Key Insights

  • Africa’s most-industrialized economy hasn’t expanded by more than 2 percent annually since 2013 and has battled to create jobs, with the unemployment rate persisting near a 15-year high in the third quarter as the economy struggles to recover from a recession. The manufacturing sector, which comprises about 13 percent of gross domestic product, lost 25,000 positions in the period.
  • The business cycle in South Africa is in its longest downward phase since records started in 1945, central bank data show.
  • An index tracking South African manufacturing activity fell to a 14-month low of 43.2 in September, a compiled by the Stellenbosch-based Bureau for Economic Research for Absa Group Ltd.

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