Picture: 123RF/Harald Tjøstheim
Picture: 123RF/Harald Tjøstheim

Wholesale trade sales shrank in real, inflation-adjusted terms in June compared with a year earlier, and eked out a 0.1% gain for the quarter.

The quarterly gain, along with a rebound in mining production in June, could help offset 0.1% contractions in both retail sales and manufacturing production in the second quarter, and help SA escape recession.

Wholesale trade sales, measured at constant 2015 prices, amounted to R147.1bn in June — down 0.5% from a year earlier, but up 1.4% from May.

At current prices — without stripping out the effects of inflation — wholesale trade sales rose 6.4% from a year earlier, to R174bn, with a 22.6% increase in fuel sales the main contributor to the rise.

Unlike retail sales, wholesale trade sales include fuel sales, which make up roughly a fifth of all wholesale trade sales. Fuel sales rose to R37.9bn in June, from R36.3bn in May, at current prices — an increase of 4.4%.