South Africa’s economic troubles continue to affect SMEs confidence levels

South Africa’s economy is in deep trouble. The signs of a falling giant are all over for everyone to see that nothing lasts forever.

These challenges have severely affected the confidence levels of local small and medium enterprise (SME) owners.

A fourth quarter 2014 Business Partners Limited SME Index (BPLSI), which measures attitudes and confidence levels among local SME owners, reports a SME’s average confidence level of 53% – a 2 percentage point quarter-on-quarter (q/q) and year-on-year (y/y) decrease.
This means that only 53% say that the South African economy will be conducive for business growth in 2015.

Ben Bierman, BPL chief financial officer, said the current issues facing the economy, such as the slow economic growth, rand volatility and load shedding, are impacting business owners’ confidence levels.

“Business owners continue to operate in a tough environment, and while they are resilient by nature, recent developments continue to erode their confidence,” Bierman said.

“When surveyed on the factors that impacted their confidence levels, corruption within government and political instability were also listed as significant factors.”

Bierman said while there is a slight increase in confidence levels, this remains an area of concern for SMEs.

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