SA is near the top of the global league when it comes to the rewards for holding money. About 3% after inflation is now on offer. Only Mexico has higher real short-term interest rates. SA is also close to the bottom of the global third-quarter 2019 growth league. This is no coincidence. It is the result of destructive policies.

Such an unnatural state of economic affairs — still very expensive money — combined with still highly depressed economic activity, has clearly not been at all good for SA business. The average real return on invested capital (cash in-cash out) has declined sharply, by about a quarter since 2012. Companies have responded by producing less, investing less, employing fewer workers and paying out more of the cash they generate in dividends.

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, ProfileData 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.