IN THE LOOP – WEEK 4
- March Lightstone Property indices showed 4.0% house price inflations
- Average interest rate for March 2021 was 0.42% above prime vs previous year’s 1.06% above prime
- Average age for first time home buyers has dropped from 37 to 36 years
- 24% of applications in March 2021 took their bond with their own banks
- Percentage of first-time buyers delinked from 77.28% to 76.92% for March 2021
- Cash sales volumes increased from 4,805 to ,5,534 for February
- Q4 of 2020 saw the markets registrations increase by 21.3% by value vs Q4 2019.
- Overall bank submission for March 2021 is up over 60%
- Bank conversion rations continue to be under pressure as lending requirements become more firm
Local & International Markets:
- The rand is stronger closing at R14.54/$ yesterday.
- EM currencies were mixed yesterday; the PEN (+1.4%), COP (+1.2%) and ZAR (+1.0%) were amongst the biggest gainers; the ARS (-0.5%), CLP (-0.4%) and THB (-0.3%) were amongst the biggest losers.
- Asian equity markets are mixed this morning; the Nikkei and Shanghai Composite are down, while the Hang Seng is up.
- Brent crude oil was up earlier this week by 20.6% year-to-date.
- The gold price was also up earlier this week, but down by 8.6% year-to-date.
- Brent crude oil is currently at $62.50/bbl; ($62.15/bbl*).
- Gold is at $1736/oz ($1728/oz*).
- SA CDS 230bps*, higher than Brazil 224bps* and lower than Turkey 452bps*.
- Yields: US 10yr at 1.70*, German bund at -0.328%* and SA 10-year generic at 9.88%**, SA’s R186 at 7.52%**.
- The central bank “remains committed to supportive policy” as the economy recovers from the pandemic.
- And, the central bank will not increase the cash rate until actual inflation is sustainably within the 2 to 3% target range. For that to occur, wage growth would have to be materially higher than currently.
- The IMF has released the April World Economic Outlook report. An upwards growth in economies is expected with the world likely to grow by 6% and the South African economy by 3.1% for the year.
- Covid-19 global update: cases have surpassed 132.42 million, while the death toll has surpassed 2.87 million; recoveries are at 106.75 million.
- Africa’s Covid-19 cases are at 4.31 million; fatalities are at 114,361.
- Morocco has 498,329 reported cases, Nigeria 163,330, Ghana 90,900, Kenya 139,448.
- Nigeria hopes to receive up to 70 million doses of the J&J vaccine this year through the African Union.
- Madagascar has now joined the global COVAX vaccine initiative.
- SA has the 19th highest caseload, at 1.552 million; 452 new cases were reported earlier this week
- Covid-19 deaths rose by 8 on Monday, to 52,995; 1.478 million people (or 95%) have recovered from the virus.
- Gauteng has the highest number of confirmed cases, at 415,540 (accounting for 26.8% of the total); 10,354 deaths have been reported.
- The Western Cape has 283,452 (accounting for 18.3% of the total) and 11,472 deaths, while KwaZulu-Natal has 334,547 (accounting for 21.6% of the total) and 10,236 deaths.
- The Eastern Cape has 195,493 cases (accounting for 12,6% of the total) and 11,363 deaths.
- 9.97 million tests have been conducted since 5 March 2020; 11,091 tests were conducted on Monday.
- 269,102 healthcare workers have been vaccinated to date.
- SA finalized a deal for 20 million shots of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
- Deliveries are expected to start later this month, allowing SA to begin a broad roll-out of vaccinations.