SA's trade surplus shrinks to R5.22 billion

According to SARS, South Africa's trade surplus shrank to R5.22 billion ($359 million) in July, compared to a revised surplus of R12.47 billion in June. Exports decreased 9% to R95.7 billion on a month-on-month basis, and imports fell 2.4% to R90.5 billion.

SARS said:

"The cumulative trade balance surplus (01 January to 31 July 2016) of R17.40bn is an improvement on the deficit for the comparable period in 2015 of R24.67bn."

Various analysts previously polled by Reuters had anticipated that the trade surplus would be some R8.1 billion. However, SA has had a challenging year, and things look likely to remain as such for the duration of this year at least.

Right: SARS Commissioner Tom Moyane