Business climate index hit all time high
The IJG Business Climate Index hit a record high of 122.9 basis points in March on the back of renewed consumer confidence, the Institute for Public Policy Research, producers of the monthly business climate monitor have said.
According to the report, consumers appeared more optimistic about their financial future as indicated by their willingness to spend on goods. This was evident in vehicle sales, with passenger vehicles increasing by 12% from the previous month along with a 3% or N$138m increase in instalment credit.
Overall credit extension to consumers did, however, decelerate due to structural supply shortages in the housing market. The export index had a good month as well – up 2.5 basis points as economic prospects in export markets continued to improve. Although metal prices were down 3%, the weaker Namibia Dollar ensured that metal exporters were unaffected in local currency terms. Fish prices were once again on the front foot after whole monk prices increased by 3% during the month, while hake fillet prices continued to struggle. Whole fish prices continued to increase, while fillet prices decreased.
Businesses also continued to invest. Commercial vehicle sales were up 3% along with strong growth in vehicle leasing transactions. Company registrations, mainly close corporations, increased by 11%. The NSX local index continued its strong run of form and is now 35% higher than in the same period last year.
The leading indicator improved by 1.5 basis points and therefore business sentiments are expected to be favourable six months down the line.