Futuregrowth was right after all. In September the asset manager’s chief investment officer, Andrew Canter, said his firm had decided that "we could not provide additional finance to some of the largest state-owned companies (such as Eskom) without having deeper sight of, and comfort around, their governance, decision-making and independence." It was a position that infuriated the state-owned companies and their minister, Lynne Brown. Canter was strong-armed into "apologising" for not warning the state-owned companies before issuing a public statement. How different it is today, a few months down the line, in the wake of President Jacob Zuma’s reckless cabinet reshuffle and the inevitable downgrade to junk status. Futuregrowth’s position almost seems positively restrained. Which is probably why there was far less of an outcry when Coronation’s Neville Chester said last week that his company wasn’t buying SA bonds because of "our concerns over the likelihood of SA’s debt burden risin...

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