SA has plunged into a recession with a surprise 0.7% contraction in the second quarter of the year. “We are in recession. We reported a contraction in the first quarter even with revisions and now in the second quarter with a fall of 0.7%, we are in recession,” statistician-general Risenga Maluleke said in Pretoria on Tuesday.​ This is despite expectations from many economists that SA would narrowly miss a recession. The Bloomberg consensus was 0.6% growth. The rand weakened sharply shortly after Statistics SA released the news:

But it soon recovered somewhat: after weakening to R15.25/$ at about 11.45am, the rand appeared to be over its worst and was back under R15.20/$ by 11.48am. A recession is defined as two consecutive quarters of declining gross domestic product (GDP) and points to a prolonged slowdown in economic activity, which stunts job creation and damps investment. Following the revisions to growth figures for 2017, this makes it the first recession since the globa...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, Morningstar financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.



Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00.