Financial markets appear to be anticipating that Cyril Ramaphosa will win at the ANC’s December elective conference, as are many consumers and business people. This suggests that SA assets and confidence could take it extremely badly should he lose. But just how bad is the fallout likely to be for the rand, equities and government bonds? And what about the effects on the real economy? Would all the country’s credit ratings likely be junked, causing a capital outflow shock and plunging the economy into a deep recession? Surprisingly, the forecasts of some of SA’s leading economists as to what might happen if Ramaphosa loses are not as dire as one might expect. Certainly, domestic investment and confidence will be deeply shaken, but the most important variable will be the state of the global economy at the time. The rand has remained relatively stable throughout 2017 and bond yields haven’t risen by much despite the breakdown in governance and the loss of SA’s investment-grade rating....

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