Light ahead for consumer
WHAT HAPPENED SEVERAL PAGES of good news during the past week dealing with interest rates and economic growth helped somewhat to relieve the consumer’s sombre mood. Though it had been expected, the SA Reserve Bank’s decision to leave interest rates unchanged was welcomed, while economists’ expectations of a better growth rate in the second quarter were exceeded with a figure of 4,9%. BUSINESS DAY said the 4,9% was good news, though economists are still expecting growth of not much more than 3% for the year. Referring to the interest rate, The Citizen said South Africans are heaving a sigh of relief, and City Press said that Bank Governor Tito Mboweni had made a brave decision. Beeld said it could have been worse, with business confidence and consumer optimism at such a low ebb.