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Reserve Bank’s leading business cycle indicator up 1.1% in February

By: African News Agency      Updated 26 minutes ago The South African Reserve Bank said on Tuesday its composite leading business cycle indicator increased by 1.1% on a month-to-month basis in February 2017. “Six of the ten component time series that were available for February 2017 increased, while four decreased,” the bank said. 

Gold and bullion miners tumble as French vote cuts haven demand

By: Bloomberg     24th April 2017 Gold dropped to a two-week low and bullion mining stocks sank the most in more than a year as investors favoured riskier assets on expectation that Emmanuel Macron will become France’s next president. The metal slipped as much as 1.5% and South African gold miners plunged as much as 8.7% after... 

Nigerian finance minister says country needs to tap its non-oil revenues

By: Reuters     21st April 2017 Nigeria plans to get out of recession by boosting government revenues and cracking down on corruption, Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun said on Thursday, and will also issue more international debt to pay for infrastructure projects. The country is in its second year of recession, brought on by... 

Land Bank sets aside R1bn to support black farming investments in 2017  

By: Terence Creamer     20th April 2017 South Africa’s Land Bank has set a target of disbursing “at least” R1-billion in 2017/18 to support investments by black entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector and to begin transforming a loan book that is still overwhelmingly composed of funding to established commercial farmers. Should the... 

Mastercard tests new biometric cards in South Africa

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th April 2017 South Africa is the first market to test payment technology provider Mastercard’s next-generation biometric card, which combines chip technology with fingerprints to conveniently and safely store a cardholder’s identity for in-store purchases. Two separate trials with retailer Pick ‘n Pay and... 

New Treasury DG will be in ‘proud tradition’ of Ramos, Kganyago and Fuzile

By: Terence Creamer     19th April 2017 Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba intends to appoint a new National Treasury director-general by the end of May, following the announcement of Lungisa Fuzile’s imminent departure from a post he has occupied for the past six years. Both ratings agencies and investors have been unsettled by Fuzile’s... 

Gold's top forecaster says prices may hit $1 350 by year-end

By: Bloomberg     19th April 2017 Gold will end the year higher, spurred by faster inflation and political tensions in Russia, Syria and North Korea, according to Intesa Sanpaolo, the best forecaster for the metal last quarter. Prices could take a V-shaped path this year, with a swoon coming mid-year as the Federal Reserve raises... 

Africa Climate Change Fund embraces new partner contributions

By: Mia Breytenbach     14th April 2017 The African Development Bank (AfDB) approved the conversion of the Africa Climate Change Fund (ACCF) to a multidonor trust fund last month. This conversion brings two new partners to the fund, the governments of Italy and Flanders, Belgium, which are contributing €4.7-million and €2-million... 

Curious case of the billion-dollar lithium mine sold for a song

By: Bloomberg     13th April 2017 High in the Andes, in northwest Argentina, stories are told of fortunes being made in lithium, the wonder metal inside iPhones to Teslas that has captivated global investors from Warren Buffett down. This is not one of those stories. 

In win for Boeing and GE, Trump says he wants to revive export bank

By: Reuters     13th April 2017 President Donald Trump plans to revive the hobbled Export-Import Bank of the United States, his office said, a victory for American manufacturers like Boeing and General Electric (GE) which have overseas customers that use the agency's government-backed loans to purchase their products. Trump... 

Scotiabank’s commodity price index gains 2.2% in February

By: Creamer Media Reporter      13th April 2017 The Scotiabank Commodity Price Index gained 2.2% month-over-month in February as industrial commodities continue to benefit from healthy demand on the back of a stronger global economic outlook, while supply-side idiosyncrasies continue to provide opportunity for differentiation, the banking... 

Indonesia eyes truce with Freeport as losses mount for both sides

By: Reuters     12th April 2017 Losses amounting to hundreds of millions of dollars appear to be pushing the Indonesian government and mining giant Freeport McMoRan to resolve a row that has crippled operations at Grasberg, the world's richest copper mine, for three months. Freeport says it has lost revenue of about... 

Singer's BHP gambit shines light on little-known oil giant

By: Bloomberg     11th April 2017 The usual suspects have planted their flags along the dusty byways of the Permian Basin, declaring where they’ve staked claims. There are names like Royal Dutch Shell, Anadarko Petroleum, Pioneer Natural Resources. And, on signs fronting a barbed-wire fence, BHP Billiton. For the world’s largest... 

SARB says downgrades, weakening rand pose risk

By: Reuters     11th April 2017 South Africa's central bank on Monday warned that the recent Cabinet reshuffle that saw the finance minister fired and the country's credit relegated to "junk" could pressure the rand and accelerate inflation as inventors sold off local assets. The rand has slipped nearly 12% since March 27 when... 

Iron slumps into bear market as Barclays sees further losses

By: Bloomberg     10th April 2017 Iron-ore’s descent into bear-market territory may herald further weakness, with Barclays pinning the blame for the slide on lower steel demand in China driving a shift from mills toward lower-quality ore and raising the prospect of a drop into the $50s. Ore with 62% content in Qingdao fell 1%... 

Banks raise objections in South Africa's FX rigging case – sources

By: Reuters     7th April 2017 Some of the banks South African regulators have alleged rigged the rand currency say the case against them lacks specific detail about anti-competitive conduct and its impact, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter said. The banks have also questioned whether the country's Competition... 

South African banks can deal with 'junk' rating impact – SARB

By: Reuters     6th April 2017 South African banks are adequately capitalised to deal with effects of a sub-investment credit rating, the South African Reserve Bank said on Thursday, after Standard & Poor's downgraded several major financial institutions to junk status. "The resilience of the banks stems from the high capital... 

'Junk'-rated debt could cost South Africa more than $10bn in lost funds

By: Reuters     6th April 2017 If South Africa loses two of its prized investment grade credit ratings for foreign and local currency borrowing in the turmoil triggered by the sacking of the finance minister, the country could lose more than $10-billion in investment funds. S&P Global has already struck. In an unscheduled... 

Chile copper industry urged to adopt sweeping changes

By: Reuters     4th April 2017 The world's biggest copper producer Chile needs to adopt new technologies and improve labour and community relations in order to maintain its global standing, industry leaders said on Tuesday. Chile's copper industry is grappling with falling productivity because much of the country's... 

Gordhan opens up about Habib Bank

By: News24Wire      31st March 2017 Sacked Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on Friday said it’s up to his successor Malusi Gigaba to take decisions regarding Gupta-linked Vardospan’s bid to take over Habib Bank. Gordhan was speaking at a briefing at Treasury, following his axing on Friday morning. 

Perseus raises Sissingué capex as mine life shortened to five years

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     31st March 2017 Dual-listed gold miner Perseus Mining has revised the expected mine life of its Sissingué gold project, in Côte d’Ivoire, from a previously expected 5.25 years to 5 years. Perseus has updated the life-of-mine plan for the Sissingué gold project, following a re-estimation of the mineral resource... 

Plan to lift rhino horn sale moratorium spot-on

By: Kelvin Kemm     31st March 2017 In February, Environmental  Affairs Minister Edna Molewa put forward the proposal that the current moratorium on the sale of rhino horn be lifted. She also proposed that internal trade in rhino horn be permitted. I agree with the principle of the argument. In fact, a couple of years ago, I spoke... 

SARB keeps interest rate steady

By: News24Wire      30th March 2017 South African Reserve Bank (SARB) governor Lesetja Kganyago announced on Thursday that the bank's Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) has decided to leave the interest rate unchanged at its second meeting this year. The repurchase rate, which is the interest rate at which the Sarb lends money to... 

Firms demand EU deal ensures their survival as May triggers Brexit

By: Reuters     29th March 2017 Carmakers and airlines easyJet and Ryanair demanded Britain secure a Brexit deal which preserves their access to Europe, warning any barriers to trade could risk the future of car plants and ground flights between the UK and the continent. No-deal in Brexit talks is not an option, Britain's car... 

Gold seen soaring to $1 500 as inflation poised for a comeback

By: Bloomberg     29th March 2017 Gold is poised to rally to levels last seen four years ago as rising inflation and negative real interest rates combine to boost demand, according to Incrementum, which says that the precious metal may be in the early stages of a bull market. Prices may climb to $1 400/oz to $1 500/oz this year,... 

Blockchain and the Future of Finance

     28th March 2017 The banking sector is an ancient one with prototype banks identified as early as 2000 BC in Babylon and Assyria, but they have also been partly responsible for a lot of economic blunders in recent years – from the 2008 recession caused by subprime lending to the EU currency crisis caused by... 

Gordhan flying back to SA tonight – Treasury

By: News24Wire      27th March 2017 Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan will comply with President Jacob Zuma’s order and return to South Africa on Monday evening. That is according to Treasury spokesperson Yolisa Tyantsi, who told Fin24 on Monday that arrangements were being made to fly him back to South Africa later on Monday evening. 

Rockwell in a bind as court issues interim liquidation order on 3 subsidiaries

By: Henry Lazenby     25th March 2017 A judge in Kimberley, South Africa, has issued an interim liquidation order against three subsidiaries of TSX- and JSE-listed Rockwell Diamonds. The interim court order does not affect Rockwell Diamonds, the parent entity. 

Kibo Mining positions for power purchase agreement with the Tanzanian government

By: African News Agency      23rd March 2017 Kibo Mining said on Thursday that it was well placed to conclude negotiations on a power purchase agreement (PPA) with the Tanzanian government following the completion of restructuring and policy changes at the State-owned power supplier. This comes after Tanzania president John Magufuli in... 

EIUG supports Eskom plan for new pricing deals with power-intensive firms 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd March 2017 The Energy Intensive User Group of Southern Africa (EIUG) believes there is policy, legislative and regulatory space to introduce new electricity pricing arrangements to help restart of idle mining and process-industry activities, as well as encourage new investments to absorb Eskom’s surplus,... 

Vital raises A$5m to advance Burkina Faso exploration

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     21st March 2017 Metals developer Vital Metals will raise A$5-million through a share placement to accelerate gold exploration in Burkina Faso. The junior told shareholders on Tuesday that some 400-million new shares would be issued, at a price of 1.25c each, to professional and sophisticated investors. 

South Africa asks World Bank to review ease-of-doing-business position in light of InvestSA initiative 

By: Terence Creamer     17th March 2017 The South African government has officially launched a new investment facilitation service, dubbed InvestSA, which it claims will dramatically reduce red tape for foreign and domestic businesses seeking to pursue greenfield or brownfield projects in the country. The service, which has both... 

Dawn welcomes new CEO

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     17th March 2017 JSE-listed Distribution and Warehousing Network (Dawn) has appointed Edwin Hewitt CEO, effective April 1, to succeed Stephen Connelly, who is taking up the position of executive deputy chairperson. Hewitt was appointed chief restructuring officer at Dawn in February, working with a major bank,... 

Amid challenges, power sector offers massive opportunities

By: Nadine James     17th March 2017 Although the power and electricity sector in Africa faces massive challenges, it also offers massive opportunities, says Power & Electricity World Africa (PEWA) event organiser Terrapinn.  

PPI lower than expected this year

     17th March 2017 Growth in agricultural and manufactured food prices continues to lose momentum, which is reflected in South African headline producer price inflation (PPI) slowing to 5.9% year-on-year in January from an upwardly revised 7.1% in December, says multinational bank BNP Paribas. The January figure... 

Gold seen climbing as Yellen sets scene for negative rates

By: Bloomberg     16th March 2017 Gold will rise after the Federal Reserve pledged to stick to its gradual pace of tightening as negative real interest rates deepen and weigh on the dollar, according to  Wayne Gordon, executive director for commodities and forex at UBS Group AG’s wealth management unit. The Fed raised rates by a... 

Gold suffers worst run since October as slide below $1 200 looms

By: Bloomberg     9th March 2017 Gold’s feeling the strain. Bullion’s being tugged back down toward $1 200/oz in the worst losing run since October as positive US economic data reinforce expectations that interest rates will probably be raised several times this year, starting with a hike next week. Bullion for immediate... 

Anticipated drop in iron-ore price prompts further warnings of consequences of WA tax

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     8th March 2017 Iron-ore prices could fall by as much as 30% or more, analysts Gavekal and HSBC have warned, prompting the Western Australian Chamber of Minerals and Energy (CME) to again warn about the consequences of implementing further taxes on iron-ore. CME CEO Reg Howard-Smith said this week that the... 

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