Economic Updates

South Africa's trade deficit widened more-than-expected to R24.50bn in January, compared to R2.70bn shortfall reported in December.

South Africa’s budget balance posted a deficit of R29.57bn in January, compared to a surplus of R20.46bn reported in the previous month.

On an annual basis, South Africa's M3 money supply climbed 6.8% in January, compared to a rise of 5.2% recorded in the preceding month.

On an annual basis, private sector credit in South Africa grew 8.6% in January, compared to a 10.1% rise reported last month.

On a sequential basis, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Switzerland grew 0.2% in 4Q12, compared to a 0.6% increase recorded in the previous quarter.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the number of unemployed in Germany unexpectedly declined by 3,000 people for February, compared to a downwardly revised drop of 14,000 recorded in January.

On a year-on-year basis, Consumer Price Inflation (CPI) in Germany eased to 1.5% in February, compared to a rate of 1.7% recorded in the previous month. Meanwhile, on a monthly basis, the CPI grew 0.6% for February, following a 0.5% drop recorded in January.

Neither theDemocrats' nor the Republican’s bill to replace the automatic spending cuts could garner enough votes in the Senate yesterday thereby making across-the-board cuts for fiscal 2013 effective from today.

On an annualised basis, the GDP in the US expanded 0.1% for 4Q12, higher than the previous estimate projecting a 0.1% drop but lower than market estimate of 0.5% growth for the quarter.

For the week ended 23 February 2013, initial jobless claims in the US fell to 344,000, compared to the previous week's revised figure of 366,000.

The CPI in Japan has dropped more-than-forecast by 0.3% YoY in January compared to a 0.1% decline reported in the previous month.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the unemployment rate in Japan has declined to 4.2% in January, compared to a revised 4.3% rate reported in December.

The official manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) in China has declined to a reading of 50.10 in February, less than market estimates and compared to a reading of 50.40 posted in the earlier month.

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