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Financial News

Global remittances to fall sharply owing to Covid-19

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     22nd April 2020 Global remittances are projected to decline sharply by about 20% this year owing to the economic crisis induced by the Covid-19 pandemic and shutdown, the World Bank reports. The projected fall, which will be the sharpest decline in recent history, is largely the result of a fall in the wages and... 

AfDB’s Adesina urges African cooperation to fight Covid-19

By: Donna Slater     22nd April 2020 An accelerated global health and economic effort is needed to overcome the Covid-19 pandemic in Africa, African Development Bank (AfDB) president Akinwumi Adesina said in a webinar this week. While Covid-19 infection rates are relatively low compared with the rest of the world, there is a... 

Recent gold plummet the result of multiple factors, says Refinitiv

By: Donna Slater     21st April 2020 As stock markets crashed recently in response to widescale and unprecedented disruptions brought about as a result of the global spread of Covid-19 and increased uncertainty, the recent, brief and highly unexpected crash in gold prices was mainly driven by four factors, all of which were... 

Solidarity Fund starts delivering food parcels to distressed families

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     20th April 2020 The Solidarity Fund on April 17 confirmed it had started the roll out of food parcels to more than 250 000 families across South Africa. The fund, which receives donations from corporates, citizens and foundations, has made R120-million available for food relief for distressed families. 

AfDB refutes media reports relating to East African crude oil pipeline project

By: Donna Slater     20th April 2020 Development finance institution, the African Development Bank (AfDB) has refuted allegations reported on by a news outlet stating that the bank plans to provide financial support to the East African crude oil pipeline project. The article references a letter by a group of civil society... 

CSSA rebrands as CGISA

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     17th April 2020 Global corporate governance body, the Chartered Secretaries Southern Africa (CCSA), has rebranded to the Chartered Governance Institute of Southern Africa (CGISA). The organisation offers corporate governance curriculum for those embarking on a career as either a chartered secretary or a... 

JSE directors, CEO donate a third of salaries for three months to Solidarity Fund

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th April 2020 The JSE has announced that its board of directors and group CEO have pledged to donate at least 30% of their salaries to the national Solidarity Fund for the next three months. This follows after the JSE donated its trading revenue for April 15 and 16 to the Solidarity fund.  

iiDENTIFii contributes to Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Solidarity Fund

By: Donna Slater     16th April 2020 Identity verification specialists iiDENTIFii says it will financially contribute to the Combatting Covid-19 Fund, launched by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, thereby helping to ease the burden on the less fortunate. The company also donated to this foundation to help it find a medical... 

Ubank donates R2m to Solidarity Fund, assists miners' families

By: Donna Slater     16th April 2020 Financial services provider Ubank, together with the Mineworkers Investment Company (MIC), have joined forces to support government to combat the negative financial impacts of Covid-19 by contributing R2-million towards relief efforts. Of this, R1-million will comprise Ubank’s contribution... 

Health foundation calls for donations to meet R500m needed to fight Covid-19

By: Donna Slater     15th April 2020 Nonprofit public benefit organisation, the South African Medical and Education Foundation (Same) is appealing to the nation, particularly domestic business, to assist in raising R500-million. The money is urgently needed for critical medical equipment required to protect healthcare workers,... 

Economic transactions plunge as Covid-19 takes its toll

By: Simone Liedtke     15th April 2020 Economic transactions in South Africa plunged in March as Covid-19 took its toll on the economy and consumers, BankservAfrica’s Economic Transaction Index (Beti) has found. This data, the financial organisation said, suggests that the economy is shrinking rapidly as the Beti declined by 3.31% in... 

Standard Chartered announces initiatives to support communities during Covid-19

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th April 2020 International banking group Standard Chartered says it is committed to supporting clients, and the communities in which it operates, both through the current pandemic crisis and the longer-term support and renewal phase. It has announced a number of measures to provide support. 

Online hackathon launched to spur development of Covid-19-tackling solutions

By: Donna Slater     14th April 2020 The African Development Bank (AfDB) and partners will host an international 72-hour online competition, the #AfricaVsVirus Challenge – aimed at developing effective solutions to the coronavirus pandemic – from April 16 to 19. The hackathon, or as the AfDB calls it, the "ideathon", is open to... 

South Africa should consider additional funding sources to combat Covid-19, says BER

By: Simone Liedtke     14th April 2020 South Africa will require significant resources to fund the coronavirus battle and, because funding is lacking, the country should be open – or at least not be surprised by – (temporary) funding options that would have been unthinkable a mere two months ago, the Bureau for Economic Research (BER)... 

Old Mutual provides free cover to healthcare workers

By: Donna Slater     8th April 2020 Financial services group Old Mutual is making R4-billion worth of cover available to about 430 000 registered healthcare workers across South Africa, the group announced on April 8. Unlike traditional cover, the initiative offered to these professionals is neither a product nor a policy and no... 

Covid-19 showing importance of early action in tackling global threats, says NPO

By: Simone Liedtke     8th April 2020 While the world’s immediate priorities have shifted to focus on dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, the virus is showing the importance of early action in tackling global threats, and it is therefore crucial that the world not emerge from this crisis to find itself worse off in terms of efforts... 

Research reveals gap in Covid-19 funding for businesses in townships

By: Donna Slater     7th April 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic and the current lockdown are already having a devastating impact on South Africa’s economy, with informal and small businesses in townships likely to feel the brunt of the impact.   A study by postgraduate students at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and entrepreneurs from... 

Innovation Hub launched to promote responsible innovation in the South African financial sector

By: Donna Slater     7th April 2020 South Africa’s financial regulators on April 7 launched the Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group (IFWG) Innovation Hub in response to changes in the financial sector driven by financial technology (fintech) and to promote responsible innovation in the sector. The IFWG Innovation Hub provides... 

Unemployment beneficiaries wait while Nedlac discussions progress

By: Donna Slater     7th April 2020 Many employers are waiting for greater clarity regarding unemployment benefits for their staff that have been temporarily laid off during the national lockdown, which is enforced from March 27 to April 16 to curb the spread of Covid-19, according to business law firm Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr (CDH).... 

Unemployment beneficiaries wait while Nedlac discussions progress
Gillian Lumb

The Property Industry Group announces industry-wide assistance, relief package

By: Simone Liedtke     7th April 2020 The Property Industry Group has announced an industry-wide assistance and relief package for retail tenants that are hardest hit by South Africa’s lockdown in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic. The initiative, which focuses principally on supporting affected small-, medium-sized and... 

The Property Industry Group announces industry-wide assistance, relief package
Property Industry Group spokesperson and SA Reit Association chairperson Estienne de Klerk

SME relief programme oversubscribed days after applications open

By: Simone Liedtke     7th April 2020 The Sakuma Relief Programme’s fund has been oversubscribed, with applications for financial assistance exceeding the current available capital of R1-billion, just days after applications opened. This includes both completed applications and applications in progress. 

Prudential Authority welcomes financial relief measures taken by banks

By: Simone Liedtke     7th April 2020 The Prudential Authority (PA) welcomes the measures taken by banks to support their customers during this period of economic turmoil and uncertainty and notes that a “safe, sound and robust banking system is a key part of South Africa’s shock absorbers during these times”.  This is especially the... 

National Treasury highlights PFMA extensions

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     3rd April 2020 Following the declaration of a state of disaster and a national lockdown in the country, Finance Minister Tito Mboweni, in terms of the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA), has issued an exemption notice to institutions to which that Act applies to ensure effective financial management and to... 

Broadband Infraco, ItakaneICT partner to enable cashless platforms

By: Natasha Odendaal     3rd April 2020 Broadband Infraco and ItakaneICT have partnered to deploy cashless payment platforms to rural and disadvantaged communities. The move will help in dispensing and transacting financially without using physical cash amid the Covid-19 outbreak. 

Standard Chartered to launch $50m global fund for Covid-19 relief

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd April 2020 International banking group Standard Chartered has launched a $50-million global fund to provide assistance to those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. Half of the funding will immediately be deployed for relief in the group’s most affected markets, while the balance will help communities over... 

Absa pledges financial support to SMMEs

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd April 2020 Financial institution Absa has partnered with the South African Future Trust (SAFT) to administer the disbursement of funds to small-, medium-sized and microenterprises (SMMEs) whose income will be impacted on in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. In a sign of support, Absa, alongside three other... 

RMB aims to ‘keep the wheels of the economy turning’ by assisting SMEs

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd April 2020 Banks, businesses, government, regulators and the broader financial services sector need to pull together like never before in a constructive partnership to help guide South Africa through what will be an extremely difficult economic period, the full scale of which is as yet unknown, Rand... 

FNB urges customers to apply for Covid-19 relief measures it offers

By: Marleny Arnoldi     2nd April 2020 FNB says Credit Life is one of the options it offers to provide relief to customers impacted by Covid-19, serving as a credit insurance mechanism. The financial services provider late in March announced a new set of cash flow relief measures for customers whose finances have been impacted by... 

FNB urges customers to apply for Covid-19 relief measures it offers

AfDB leading the Covid-19 fight with financing in Africa

By: Marleny Arnoldi     2nd April 2020 The African Development Bank (AfDB) on April 1 approved $2-million in emergency assistance for the World Health Organisation (WHO). This will help reinforce the organisation’s capacity to help African countries contain the Covid-19 pandemic and mitigate its impacts.  

Santam commits R200m to assist clients, suppliers and for the Solidarity Fund

By: Donna Slater     1st April 2020 Financial services provider and general insurer, Santam Group, has committed R200-million in Covid-19 relief to help clients and suppliers and to contribute to the government’s Solidarity Fund. Santam Group will also contribute to flattening the Covid-19 curve through additional corporate social... 

AfDB, Moz government ink deal to pave road crucial to trade

By: Donna Slater     1st April 2020 The government of Mozambique and development finance institution, the African Development Bank (AfDB). have signed a protocol agreement for a $34-million grant for the paving of the 35 km Nambungali-Roma road, in Mozambique, to facilitate trade and promote social inclusion of local communities.... 

AfDB, Moz government ink deal to pave road crucial to trade

Standard Chartered commits $1bn to companies at forefront of fighting Covid-19

By: Donna Slater     31st March 2020 International banking group Standard Chartered will commit $1-billion in financing for companies that provide goods and services to help in the fight against Covid-19, and those planning the switch into making products that are in high demand to fight the worldwide pandemic, the bank announced on... 

Covid-19 may exacerbate the abuse of power – Corruption Watch  

By: Sane Dhlamini     31st March 2020 Not-for-profit organisation Corruption Watch on Tuesday released its yearly corruption report with executive director David Lewis  saying South Africans should not expect corruption to lessen during the coronavirus pandemic. This year’s report is themed “The Writing is on the Wall” and shows... 

Covid-19 may exacerbate the abuse of power – Corruption Watch
Corruption Watch executive director, David Lewis

FNB says assist customers impacted by Covid-19

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     30th March 2020 First National Bank (FNB) has been working to reconfigure its operations, where necessary, to operate efficiently and to help customers, especially those whose financial position has been impacted by Covid-19. “Our aim is to ensure that all our customers can continue keeping their financial... 

Insurers try to ease burden on policyholders amid Covid-19 pandemic

By: Donna Slater     30th March 2020 To help ease the financial burden potentially brought to some people by the slow-down in business during the coronavirus pandemic and national lockdown, Momentum Short-Term Insurance (MSTI) is giving clients early access to R26-million in future no-claims and safety bonuses. To provide immediate... 

Standard Bank ‘ready to serve’ during Covid-19 lockdown

By: Simone Liedtke     27th March 2020 Financial institution Standard Bank on March 27 said it “strongly supports” the measures to preserve people’s health and lives, adding that the strong public health measures adopted by governments against the spread of Covid-19 were “urgently necessary”. In his weekly newsletter, Standard Bank CE... 

Standard Bank ‘ready to serve’ during Covid-19 lockdown

Solidarity Fund launched to assist in Covid-19 fight

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th March 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa on March 23 announced the creation of a Solidarity Fund, designated to unite the nation and accelerate the country’s response to Covid-19. The focus of the fund is to alleviate the suffering and distress caused by the virus on the country, and will mobilise the support... 

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