Monday, February 25, 2008

South Africa: Why Worry (This is not a question)

Jean Temkin writes: In the past 14 months, the oil price has risen 79%...the situation has changed drastically over the past four months as the dollar gained against the rand. With the rand at a 17-month low against the dollar, the outlook for the petrol price is bleak. Depending on a combination of the rand’s value and the oil price, calculating counts for petrol is dicey, but the next one looks like R8,30/l.
NVDL: I don't know about you, but I am already feeling the pinch of higher prices. Foodwise and petrolwise. It's becoming harder to make ends meet. I'm seriously considering NOT going down to the Argus for exactly the reason that I may not be able to afford to do so. It's a want, not a need.

Jean Temkin writes: Risks include a US recession and political uncertainty. Investors are concerned about Zuma’s August 14 trial and a shift to the left in the ANC leadership.

NVDL: I've been realistic about our economic prospects, others call this pessimism. A friend says that we haven't grown at the rate we have (in SA) for a long long time. Things can't be better. Exactly. After such a long 'good' run, we're due for a protracted 'ill turn'. Not only are the microeconomic fundamentals dodgy, so is the world economy. The global economic malaise is looking increasingly to me like the ruckus going on pre- The Iraq War. Everyone had their theories, and in the end, most people supported the war, didn't they? I didn't. But the same reasons for the mêlée into Iraq are the reasons behind the growing malaise everywhere. Expensive oil, stupid.


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