19 March 2012
Boosted by increases in consumption by households and the government, South Africa’s real gross domestic expenditure rose to 5.1% in the fourth quarter of 2011, the Reserve Bank reports.
This was up from a revised 4.8% in the previous three months.
“This rate of growth, the highest since the third quarter of 2010, primarily resulted from increases in real final consumption expenditure by the household sector and general government, alongside sustained firm growth in real gross fixed capital formation,” the Bank said in its latest quarterly bulletin on Monday.
Consumer spending expanded at a robust rate in the fourth quarter, to 4.6%, after increasing by 3.8% in the third quarter.
More disposable income
According to the central bank, the faster pace of spending was consistent with added increases in disposable income of households.
“This faster pace of spending was consistent with a further increase in disposable income of households and positive wealth effects,” the Bank said.
Growth in real disposable income of households accelerated from an annualised rate of 3.9% in the third quarter of 2011 to 4.7% in the fourth quarter, reflecting improved employment levels during this period.
“The sustained growth in real spending by households was evident across all expenditure categories, with spending on services in particular regaining momentum.”
For 2011, real expenditure by households advanced by 5%.