Category Archives: Expenditure and Income

The peaks and troughs of municipal income

The peaks and troughs of municipal income

For many of us who are fortunate enough, things just work. Turn on a tap, and water flows. Flip a switch, and there is light. We often take for granted the extremely complex system that provides us with services every day. Local government is a vital cog in this system. South Africa’s 257 municipalities are   read more »


Formal non-agricultural sector jobs increase in the 4th quarter 2020

Formal non-agricultural sector jobs increase in the 4th quarter 2020

Jobs in the formal non-agricultural sector increased by 76 000 in the fourth quarter of 2020, bringing the total number of persons employed in the formal non-agricultural sector in South Africa to approximately 9,64 million. This is according to the Quarterly Employment Statistics (QES, Q4:2020) survey released by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA). Year-on-year, formal sector   read more »


An update on municipal finances for the quarter ending June 2020

An update on municipal finances for the quarter ending June 2020

Even though South Africa’s 257 municipalities increased their spending in the quarter ended June 2020, the rise was slower than increases recorded in previous quarters. Spending increases by 4,6% Local government spent R105,9 billion in the quarter ended June 2020, up by R4,6 billion (or 4,6%) compared with the quarter ended June 2019, according to the latest   read more »


Public-sector infrastructure investment falls for a third year

Public-sector infrastructure investment falls for a third year

The economic downturn and reduced levels of government infrastructure investment have taken a heavy economic toll on capital spending by the public sector. Public-sector spending on infrastructure (referred to as capital expenditure) decreased for a third consecutive year, falling from R250 billion in 2018 to R231 billion in 2019 according to Stats SA’s latest Capital expenditure by   read more »


EBA spending on transport declines

EBA spending on transport declines

The South African National Roads Agency Limited (SANRAL) and the Gautrain Management Agency were two of five transport institutions that cut spending in 2018/19. Total expenditure by extra-budgetary accounts and funds (EBAs) involved in transport fell by 3,5%, from R32,0 billion in 2017/18 to R30,9 billion in 2018/19.1 This is according to the latest Financial statistics of   read more »


An update to municipal spending and revenue (March 2020)

An update to municipal spending and revenue (March 2020)

Local government increased spending by 12,2% over the last year, driven largely by increased spending on employee costs. South Africa’s 257 municipalities spent R96,8 billion in the quarter ended March 2020 on operational costs, up from R86,3 billion in the quarter ended March 2019. This excludes capital spending. The latest Quarterly financial statistics of municipalities report shows   read more »


A 110-year-old trade venture

A 110-year-old trade venture

It’s fascinating to think that one of the earliest experiments in free trade happened right here in southern Africa. Exactly 110 years ago this month, the Southern Africa Customs Union (SACU) was born. We explore data showing how the region depends on the oldest surviving trading bloc in the world. On 31 May 1910, South   read more »


COVID-19: Nine in ten businesses report reduced turnover

COVID-19: Nine in ten businesses report reduced turnover

The second wave of Stats SA’s COVID-19 business impact survey provides an update on how South African businesses are currently faring under lockdown. The first impact survey covered the period 30 March to 13 April 2020, and the results were published on 21 April.1 The survey asked firms in the formal sector how the COVID-19   read more »


An update to municipal spending and revenue (December 2019)

An update to municipal spending and revenue (December 2019)

South Africa’s 257 municipalities spent a total of R95,2 billion in the quarter ended December 2019 (October to December). This is how much it costs municipalities to provide services – such as water, electricity and sanitation – to millions of households across the country. The R95,2 billion was higher than the R84,4 billion that was   read more »


Working capital: how do South African businesses fare?

Working capital: how do South African businesses fare?

Stats SA provides a snapshot of working capital across the formal business sector in the latest release of the Annual Financial Statistics (AFS) report. Working capital is a measure of a company’s liquidity and is one of a number of measures that provide insight into a company’s ability to pay off debt. To calculate working   read more »