The RMB/BER business confidence index in South Africa rose to 24 in the third quarter of 2020 from a record low of 5 in the previous period. It was the highest reading since the last quarter of 2019, as the country gradually relaxed most of its coronavirus restrictions during the period. Across sectors, confidence rebounded the most in wholesale and retail trade, supported by the agricultural sector and a continued recovery in international trade. "The improvement in business sentiment could mean that the 51% annualized contraction in gross domestic product in the three months through June was the worst point in this cycle", said Ettienne le Roux, RMB’s chief economist.

Business Confidence in South Africa averaged 42.97 points from 1975 until 2020, reaching an all time high of 92 points in the third quarter of 1980 and a record low of 5 points in the second quarter of 2020. This page provides - South Africa Business Confidence - actual values, historical data, forecast, chart, statistics, economic calendar and news. South Africa Business Confidence - data, historical chart, forecasts and calendar of releases - was last updated on October of 2020. source: Bureau for Economic Research (BER)

Business Confidence in South Africa is expected to be 24.00 points by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Business Confidence in South Africa to stand at 32.00 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the South Africa Business Confidence is projected to trend around 34.00 points in 2021 and 37.00 points in 2022, according to our econometric models.

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South Africa Business Confidence

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
24.00 5.00 92.00 5.00 1975 - 2020 points Quarterly


Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2019-11-27 10:00 AM Q4 26 21 14
2020-03-11 10:00 AM Q1 18 26 20
2020-06-10 11:00 AM Q2 5 18 13
2020-09-09 10:00 AM Q3 24 5 7
2020-11-27 10:00 AM Q4 24 8


News Stream
South Africa Business Sentiment Jumps in Q3
The RMB/BER business confidence index in South Africa rose to 24 in the third quarter of 2020 from a record low of 5 in the previous period. It was the highest reading since the last quarter of 2019, as the country gradually relaxed most of its coronavirus restrictions during the period. Across sectors, confidence rebounded the most in wholesale and retail trade, supported by the agricultural sector and a continued recovery in international trade. "The improvement in business sentiment could mean that the 51% annualized contraction in gross domestic product in the three months through June was the worst point in this cycle", said Ettienne le Roux, RMB’s chief economist.
2020-09-09
South Africa Business Confidence at Record Low
The RMB/BER business confidence index in South Africa fell further to 5 in the second quarter of 2020 from 18 in the previous period, reaching a record low since the series began in 1975. The lockdown measures that were taken to address the health emergency posed by COVID-19 severely impacted on already-weak business conditions. Activity collapse across sectors would agree with a severe contraction in GDP in the second quarter.
2020-06-10
South Africa Business Confidence at 21-Year Low
The RMB/BER business confidence index in South Africa slipped to 20 in the first quarter of 2020, its lowest level in over two decades, from 26 in the previous period, amid a turnaround in the confidence of the same sectors that improved in the fourth quarter namely construction, manufacturing and retail trade. In addition, sentiment among wholesalers and new vehicle dealers remained unchanged at heavily depressed levels. Persistent demand weakness, load shedding, bailouts of struggling state-owned enterprises, the deterioration in the government’s finances and the spreading of the coronavirus around the world were the main reasons pointed to the deterioration."For a small open economy already in recession, the timing of the prospective sharp Covid-19-induced global slowdown could not have been worse. Exports will be hit, tourism flows will be affected, and supply-chain disruptions will be widely felt." said Ettienne le Roux, RMB’s chief economist.
2020-03-11
South Africa Business Confidence Edges Up in Q4
The RMB/BER business confidence index in South Africa rose for the first time in two years to 26 in Q4 2019 after hitting a 20-year low of 21 in the prior period, as sentiment improved among constructors, manufacturers and retailers. Still, confidence remained stuck in negative territory, with the index well below the 3-year high of 44 reached in Q1 2018 when Cyril Ramaphosa took over as president of the country. "At current levels, business confidence remains consistent with an economy bumbling along in near recession-like conditions,” RMB said.
2019-11-27

South Africa Business Confidence
In South Africa, the BER Business Confidence Index covers 1,400 business people in the building sector, 1,400 in the trade sector and 1,000 in manufacturing. The survey assesses the level of optimism that senior executives in the companies have about current and expected developments regarding sales, orders, employment, inventories and selling prices. The index varies on a scale of 0 to 100, where 0 indicates an extreme lack of confidence, 50 neutrality and 100 extreme confidence.