Category Archives: Expenditure and Income

The South African economy records a positive fourth quarter

The South African economy records a positive fourth quarter

Real gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 1,2%1 in the fourth quarter (October–December), taking the annual growth rate for 2021 to 4,9%. The fourth quarter was upbeat, with personal services, trade, manufacturing and agriculture the key drivers of growth. An increase in demand for goods and services drove up the expenditure side of the economy,   read more »


An overview of government spending

An overview of government spending

Total South African government spending flirted with the R2 trillion mark in the 2019/20 financial year, according to data published by Stats SA. The data, recently published in the Financial statistics of consolidated general government statistical release, covers the period before the COVID-19 pandemic, providing a benchmark for when comparable pandemic-era data become available. The South   read more »


The decline in public-sector infrastructure spending

The decline in public-sector infrastructure spending

A simple picture can tell a striking story. The bell-shaped chart below shows the rise and subsequent decline of South African public-sector infrastructure investment. Capital expenditure represents the money that is spent on construction, machinery, equipment, land, buildings and other fixed assets. This form of investment has an impact on communication, travel, logistics and the   read more »


The economy grows by 1,2% in Q2: 2021

The economy grows by 1,2% in Q2: 2021

The South African economy recorded its fourth consecutive quarter of growth, expanding by 1,2% in the second quarter of 2021 (April–June). 1  This followed a revised 1,0% rise in real gross domestic product (GDP) in the first quarter (January–March). Despite the gains made over the last four quarters, the economy is 1,4% smaller than what   read more »


GDP rises in the first quarter of 2021

GDP rises in the first quarter of 2021

The South African economy grew by 1,1% in the first quarter of 2021 (January–March), translating into an annualised growth rate of 4,6%.1 This follows a revised 1,4% (annualised: 5,8%) rise in real gross domestic product (GDP) in the fourth quarter of 2020. The finance, mining and trade industries were the main drivers of output on   read more »


Youth still find it difficult to secure jobs in South Africa

Youth still find it difficult to secure jobs in South Africa

This year marks the 45th anniversary of the 16 June 1976 student uprising in Soweto. In 1994, the new democratic government declared 16 June as National Youth Day and June as the Youth Month. With the focus on the youth under the theme: “The Year of Charlotte Mannya Maxeke: Growing youth employment for an inclusive   read more »


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 »