Week 4

Week 4

IN THE LOOP – WEEK 4

Property Industry:

  • 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 Update:

  • 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.

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