Ratings agency Moody's is due to provide a scheduled update on SA on Friday. The agency downgraded SA to junk status a year ago and now has us on a negative outlook, but it would be pretty surprising if it did anything at a moment that is such a tipping point for SA's public finances.

Finance minister Tito Mboweni staked his February budget on a cut of more than R300bn to the public sector wage bill over the next three years. This week, the Public Service Co-ordinating Bargaining Council is expected to give the go-ahead to public sector trade unions to declare a dispute with the government after wage talks deadlocked on April 23. That would pave the way for a conciliation process which, if it fails, could result in a strike...

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