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MPC interest rate decision

Jacques du Toit, Property Analyst at Absa Home Loans

 
Interest rates unchanged: 
 
Based on a number of economic and interest rate-related factors, the Reserve Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decided to leave the key monetary policy interest rate – the repo rate – unchanged at a level of 7% per annum at its penultimate meeting of 2016. This caused commercial banks’ prime lending base rates for extending credit to the consumer and business sectors to remain stable at 10,5% per annum. Factors that prompted the MPC in keeping the repo rate unchanged include a strengthening rand exchange rate in recent weeks, less upward pressure on inflation, a subdued economic performance in the first half of the year, continued financial pressure on households and businesses and indications of a continued relatively subdued cycle of monetary policy tightening in the US. Recent high-frequency domestic data releases (mining production, manufacturing production, retail sales, new vehicle sales and the leading business cycle indicator) point to continued poor economic growth prospects in the near term. However, macroeconomic trends and inflationary pressures will be closely monitored and further rate hikes in coming months cannot be ruled out.
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Kanonkop and Rijk’s make history with 11th Absa Top 10 Award Win

Legendary Stellenbosch wine estate Kanonkop and Rijk’s Cellars from Tulbagh have furthered their dominance of the Absa Top 10 Pinotage Awards by each raking in an unprecedented 11th Absa Top 10 Trophy. At this year’s awards function, held on 26 August at the Cavalli Estate outside Stellenbosch, the Kanonkop Pinotage 2010 and Rijk’s Reserve Pinotage 2013 won two of the Absa Top 10 trophies handed to the winning wines in the 2016 competition. The 10 winners topped a total of 144 wines entered for the event, which was the 20th time South Africa’s leading cultivar-focussed wine competition was held.

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Kanonkop and Rijk’s set to make history in 20th anniversary

Absa top 10 Pinotage competition

The two top producers in the history of the Absa Top 10 Pinotage Competition are both vying for a record 11th win in this premier wine competition which has been an integral part of the South African wine industry scene since 1997. Kanonkop Estate from Stellenbosch and Tulbagh’s Rijk's Private Cellar both saw two of their Pinotage wines making the list of 20 finalist wines from which this year’s Absa Top 10 winners will be chosen for the awards ceremony on August 26.

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Manufacturing stuck in a rut

According to IOL Weak demand continues to dog the South African manufacturing sector, according to the Absa Manufacturing Survey, which was released on Wednesday. Domestic demand indicators fell further into negative territory compared to the first quarter of 2016.

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Barclays takes first step to sell down

According to Business Day BARCLAYS has taken the first step on the road to selling down its 62% stake in Barclays Africa (Absa), calling an April 28 shareholders’ meeting at which they will vote on the plan.

The London-based group revealed no more details on Tuesday on how, or to whom, it seeks to sell the stake, which it said last month it wanted to reduce to less than 20%, to enable it to de-consolidate the South African banking group for regulatory and accounting purposes.

The decision to sell follows a strategic review of the UK group’s businesses by its new CEO, Jes Staley.

"Barclays faces a regulatory environment where it carries all of the financial responsibility for Barclays Africa and only receives a proportion of the benefits," says the UK group in a document sent to its shareholders, along with a circular convening the meeting, which will follow its annual general meeting on April 28.

"Changes to regulatory capital standards, as well as the taxation environment, are expected to make continuing consolidation of the business increasingly unattractive," says the group.

It said Barclays had been in Africa for 100 years and had excellent businesses here and that it was a very difficult decision.


 

Source

Business Day

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Barclays Africa's RISE incubator kicks off

  • Published in Videos

Rise is a global community for open innovation designed to pioneer the future of financial services. Already open in New York, London and Manchester, Rise has been created by Barclays to plug start- ups, corporates and innovators into a global network that will connect, co-create and scale innovation.

The opening of the Rise Innovation Hub in Cape Town was the 1st hub of its kind to be opened in Africa. In Africa, Barclays is looking at developing satellite hubs in Kenya and Mauritius. Globally, Israel and Lithuania are scheduled to open hubs in H1 2016.

“Locating the Rise Innovation Hub in the Mother City ensured that we are able to attract the best talent and ideas to our formal accelerator programmes, as well as offering a great working space (for free) to those fin-tech innovators looking for a place to develop the next big thing,” a Barclays representative said.

Rise provides physical sites and a global digital platform for innovative companies to access Barclays’ resources, partners and 325 years of trusted expertise and, on 10 December 2015, we will be officially launching the first of these physical sites in Cape Town, South Africa.

The financial services landscape, like many other sectors, has experienced significant disruption in recent times. Barclays said customers and clients are increasingly demanding innovative solutions – that is, great ideas translated into measurable benefits.

The financial services sector will have to deliver exponentially better solutions at exponentially faster speeds.

“We are changing the way in which we think and operate to optimise the potential for innovation. We increasingly see ourselves as part of an ecosystem that comprises customers, clients, suppliers, entrepreneurs, rivals and other large corporates to name a few.”

“In areas of products and services where we don’t lead, our approach is to connect and collaborate with others in our ecosystem to ensure that we offer the best of what is available.”

“Through our international Rise programme, we are plugging start-ups, corporates and innovators into a physical and digital global network in order to connect, co-create and scale the ‘next big thing’ in financial services.”

Rise is a global community for open innovation and a platform for co-creation that will pioneer new fintech.

“We believe that by connecting and collaborating more with people and companies in our ecosystem, we will be able to deliver better solutions, ultimately helping our customers and clients to achieve their ambitions in the right way.”

The most recent Rise Global Innovation Hub to have launched was in New York on 15 July. By the end of 2016, Barclays plans of have opened Rise hubs in North America, Europe, Africa and Asia.

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