Consumer Watch – March 2020

Economic indicators released in March 2020 were mixed with vehicle sales growing by 3.0% y-y in February. The ABSA PMI declined to 44.3 points while CPI and PPI inflation in February were stable at 4.6% and 4.5% respectively. Following a -17.0% drop in December 2019, the value of building plans approved fell by -33.6% y-y in January 2020. In April, the cost of fuel will plummet to R13.26/litre and R12.09/litre for petrol and diesel respectively (coastal) after a -R1.94 and -R1.40 respective cut in prices. The rand took a beating on several fronts in March ending the month at R17.87/$, a 18.9% y-y depreciation. During the month the SA Reserve Bank cut the repo rate by -100bps to 5.25%.