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Interest rate cut expected on Thursday

The SA Reserve Bank (Sarb) is likely to cut interest rates by 25 basis points to 6.5 percent when its monetary policy committee (MPC) meets on Thursday due to moderating inflation.

Statistics South Africa's consumer price inflation data released last month showed that headline inflation eased to 4.6 percent year-on-year in July, from 5.1 percent in June.

This was as a result of the welcome downturn in food costs, electricity and fuel prices.

Research analyst at Nomura, Peter Attard Montalto, said last week: "The Sarb MPC looks likely to cut rates by 25 basis points (bps) at its meeting on Thursday as the doves seem to have grown tired of waiting for risk events while the hawks are still willing to be patient. However, the doves are in the majority."

Montalto said: "It comes down to risk aversion or not. The doves are more risk-loving in terms of monetary policy action than we think could be justified in future."

The reasons for cutting "are still marginal, however, as most weak growth is structural and, given the risks on the horizon, at best it looks like an attempt to do what little they can to support growth, when they can, in a minimal way".

Read more: Interest rate cut expected on Thursday

 
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