Welcome to our last News Flash of 2019. We wish you peace and joy as the year draws to a close and may your journey into the new decade continue on this note, accompanied by much prosperity. Our Weekly News Flashes will resume on the 10 January 2020.
- Boris Johnson has won a conservative majority larger than anything seen since Margaret Thatcher, strengthening his position as Prime Minister of Britain. Jeremy Corbyn is facing calls to resign after the crushing defeat, the worst for the labour party since 1935.
- European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde has said that the euro zone’s economic slowdown is showing signs of bottoming out, suggesting further interest-rate cuts are unlikely any time soon.
- President Trump has signed the phase one trade deal with China! This deal delays imminent tariffs on Chinese goods worth billions of dollars and reduces some tariffs already in place. In return, China has pledged to purchase American farm goods. Global equity markets and emerging market currencies (including the rand), have responded very positively in the wake of this ‘risk-on’ development.
- The Judiciary Committee in the House of Representatives will likely approve articles of impeachment against President Trump later today. This will set up a vote by the full House next week.
- President Ramaphosa addressed the South African people regarding the sudden and sustained load shedding that impacted the country. He said that sabotage was partially to blame for the widespread power cuts.
- The mining industry has requested permission to produce its own power. It is up to Gwede Mantashe the Minister of Mineral Resources to consider the appeal. The industry’s request states that they could generate 869MW of solar power and up to another 800MW of conventional power themselves.
- The Passenger and Rail Agency (Prasa) has been put under administration and its current board has been dissolved. This was announced by Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula just days after South African Airways (SAA) went into voluntary business rescue.
- Herman Mashaba, the ex-mayor of Johannesburg, has started an organisation called the People’s Dialogue and Ex-DA leader Mmusi Maimane has signed up.
- Follow this link for analysis by Tim Cohen on why Ramaphosa’s strategy for South Africa’s State-Owned Enterprises is wrong.
- With so much negativity on SA abounding, follow this link, compiled by JP Landman (political and trend analyst), for a very different economic perspective on South Africa.
Sources: Dynasty, Stanlib, Prescient, Daily Maverick, Moneyweb, and Bloomberg Markets, etc