With the usual frenzy expected on Black Friday later in the month, when shops offer discounts and South Africans go on a spending spree, the experts are cautioning against getting into debt because of the downturn in the economy.
On the one hand, the adverts for Black Friday have begun, the Christmas lights have been set up in Cape Town’s Adderley Street just waiting for the switching on ceremony, the festive season is almost upon us and brings with it the temptation to splurge on big-ticket items so that we can spoil our loved ones.
However, Herman Lombard, founder and executive director of financial services provider African Unity, said: “While it feels great to treat ourselves and our loved ones to expensive gifts and holidays, the reality is that we live in tough economic times and overspending during December causes anxiety during January and may mean that you begin the new year with debt that you didn’t intend to.”
On the other hand, the economic outlook currently looks extremely bleak as business confidence appears to remain at a plateau and policymakers have little wiggle room to set the economy on course.
The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry said: “Apart from the finance minister recently painting a sobering picture about the economy, which is expected to grow by only half-a-percent in 2019, the fiscal situation appears to be hard to contain within sustainable economic parameters.”