Growth in retail trade sales moderated to 2.1% year-on-year in August, down from 2.4% in July, Statistics South Africa said on Wednesday.
The main contributors to the 2.1% increase were general dealers (contributing 1.4 percentage points) and retailers in hardware, paint and glass (contributing 0.4 of a percentage point).
Seasonally adjusted retail trade sales increased by 0.6% month-on-month in August, following a month-on-month increase of 1.2% in July and a 0.8% decline in June.
Nedbank economists said some improvement in sales growth may be experienced over the next few months as the effects of the strikes wear off and the festive season approaches.
“However, the underlying trend in consumer spending is likely to remain subdued due to poor household finances and fragile confidence. Underlying local economic conditions remain weak.
“The Reserve Bank continues to face the dilemma of striking a balance between weak growth and high inflation. We expect the Reserve Bank to continue on its path of moderate tightening, hiking by another 0.25 % in November. This, however, will depend on rand movements,” said Nedbank.
The Reserve Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee will hold its last meeting for the year from 18 – 20 November 2014.
Source : SAnews.gov.za