Does Business Rescue count as default?

What does Business Rescue mean for credit risk, ratings and cross-default? Business Rescue precludes creditors from applying for liquidation of the business. This is the removal of an existing right of lenders: “a temporary moratorium on the rights of claimants against the company or in respect of property in its possession” From what I gather […]

South Africa ranks 2nd in financial inclusion study

The Brookings Financial and Digital Inclusion Project measures South Africa one place behind Kenya in terms of financial inclusion. I’m still working my way through the full report, but Kenya’s score is a significant jump above South Africa and the closely contested positions below it. Is Kenya genuinely making such inroads or is this a […]

SA85-90 “combined” and more actuarial sloppiness

I know of far too many actuaries who think that the “average” SA85/90 table is an appropriate base for their insured lives mortality assumption. It’s not. It’s also a good example of “actuarial sloppiness”. To be specific, it is equally inappropriate if your current experience is a reasonable fit for the combined SA85/90 table. SA85/90 […]

Argentina in default for second time in 13 years

S&P declares Argentina to be in default for the second time in 13 years and the third in 25. Inflation is likely to hit 40% this year and the Peso has already lost a quarter of its value this year, measured against the US Dollar. Messages? This time isn’t different, sovereign debt crises happen all […]

Emerging Markets and Equity Performance

The astoundingly useful guys at FT Alphaville pointed me towards this Gerard Minack analysis of emerging market returns yesterday. The message is that high growth economies don’t necessarily translate to high equity returns. The argument can be summarised as this: Earnings growth is correlated with economic growth Valuation changes contribute significantly to equity returns and […]

Should South Africa import Chinese TVs?

Should South Africa import Chinese television sets? Your answer to this question depends probably on your education. If you were university educated in South Africa, you are likely to be in the market at various times in your life for a large LED backlit LCD panel with a high refresh rate and more HDMI inputs […]

Price controls causing exactly what you’d expect in Venezuela

Chavez has instituted price controls in Venezuela. So now it’s hard to find flour. And toilet paper. It’s only not laughable since these policies are affecting everyday Venezuelans and damaging the economy, which is the last thing a slightly wobbly South American economic and political setup at the moment.