This week left most South African’s shocked as the GDP results for the first quarter of this year shrank unexpectedly by 2.2%. This was due to a multitude of factors, partly because of the falloff in the resource sector. Additionally, it has influenced the relatively volatile week, as the rand weakened, hitting R13.25 to the dollar.
- The G7 summit will be held this weekend. So far, Canada, Germany, and France have come together saying that they will not sign a statement at the G-7 summit unless the US makes major concessions to trade, the Iran deal, and the Paris climate accord.
- China has said it is willing to boost imports if the US meets them halfway. Previously, it has warned that if Trump imposes import tariffs on June 15, it will withdraw all commitments to increase purchases of American goods.
- Canadian Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau pressed Donald Trump in a conversation about the new steel and aluminium tariffs imposed on Canada due to a “national security” issue. Trump replied with an incorrect history quip saying, “Didn’t you guys burn down the White House?” referring to the War of 1812 (it was the British).
- Special Counsel Robert Mueller has accused Paul Manafort, former chairman of Trump’s 2016 campaign, of tampering with witnesses’ testimony. This comes as Trump has been tweeting this week that he has the power to pardon himself.
- Microsoft has purchased the coding repository site GitHub for $7.5 billion.
- Facebook is in trouble again; the company gave at least four Chinese firms access to its data.
- This week, South Africa’s first quarter GDP results came in shrinking by 2.2%.
- The rand experienced a topple this week, although there was a weakening among emerging markets in general South Africa was one of the worst performers touching R13.25 to the US dollar at one point.
- KPMG announced that they would be cutting 400 South African jobs. After the Gupta drama, they have already lost 800 people, so this has left the remaining employees somewhat perturbed.
- Jacob Zuma’s corruption court case has been postponed to July.
- Follow the link, for an article written by Anthea Jeffery, on the effectiveness of the BEE policy, titled: The BEE-sting that kills – analysis of a policy gone horribly wrong.