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Land is State revenue
The only understanding required is that the days of conflating land with capital, in order to obfuscate the importance of rent, are over. The Physiocrats, Smith and other classical economists had a good understanding of rent as being the return to land, as wages to labour and profit or interest to capital. There were indeed some signs, around the turn of the 19th century, that America and Britain would go that way.
Ramaphosa election the biggest confidence boost since 1994
The election of Ramaphosa this month could result in the biggest surge in confidence since the 1994 elections. The last time we had such a big change was after the 1994 elections, Kershoff said. The statesmanship of Ramaphosa, his leadership and vision are very good - in a sense a cheap way to boost the economy - you know you can build confidence in that way.
VAT hike irks unions
SA Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) leadership will meet next month and could recommend strikes to protest against the hike in the rate of value-added tax (VAT), Saftu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said this. The same people, including now President Cyril Ramaphosa, that backed the hike in the rate of VAT were the ones that had fought the apartheid government's move to introduce VAT in the early 1990s.
IDT allegedly 'canned' forensic report to recoup R100m
Bankrupt state-owned entity the Independent Development Trust (IDT) has been sitting on a forensic investigation report that recommends that it recoup almost R100m in overpayments that were made for a major project in KwaZulu-Natal. According to a highly placed IDT source, the report would have had undesirable political consequences. When Nkosinathi Nhleko was appointed public works minister in March 2017 and subsequently made changes to the IDT board, the report was canned.
KPMG offers full cooperation to Ntsebeza inquiry
KPMG South Africa said on Friday it would give its full cooperation to an industry inquiry into the audit firm's conduct, after the inquiry had expressed frustration that it was not given all the documents needed to do its work. The SA Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA), headed by Advocate Dumisa Ntsebeza, began hearing testimony on Monday on whether KPMG members who are registered with SAICA violated any ethics.
Budget strikes right balance between taxes and incentives for businesses to grow
The improved outlook flows from strong growth in agriculture, higher commodity prices and an incipient recovery in investor sentiment. It is crucial industry is supported and the Budget has put aside both incentives and funds for this purpose, says Polkinghorne. In this regard, Standard Bank believes that the outcome for smaller businesses can be improved through supporting entrepreneurs on their growth journeys. If the Budget supports a steady rand, then the importers have a gap to purchase goods more cheaply, says Polkinghorne.
VAT increase will not help local auto industry
The increase in VAT announced in Budget 2018 will likely negatively impact domestic vehicle sales and would not help increase vehicle production in South Africa, according to the National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM). In Moothilal's view, this would be a growth enhancing measure for local component manufacturers. In NAACAM's view, it would have been ideal if allocations for greater industrialisation incentives had been announced in the budget.
There's a way to beat sin taxes and save thousands
In light of sin tax hikes, giving up drinking and smoking could have a profound effect on your pocket, said an economist. Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba announced an increase in sin taxes between 6% and 10%, during his Budget speech on Wednesday. For consumers who will feel the pain of higher taxes, ABSA economist Kwaku Koranteng is of the view that consumers can turn the situation around and save thousands.
Economists upbeat as stats show encouraging environment for start-ups
Johannesburg - Recently published statistics on South Africa's consumer price index (CPI) reveal that input costs are stabilising for businesses, while creating an encouraging environment for start-ups. Economists are upbeat that the latest stats predict better times ahead. Dieter von Fintel, a senior economics lecturer at the University of Stellenbosch, believes this environment presents new hope for the South African economy. The prediction of stable prices throughout 2018 will also make loans and capital more accessible to start-ups, Von Fintel added.
RAs still good way to neutralise Budget 2018 tax burden
He referred to Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba having left the marginal tax rate at 45% for individuals earning more than R1.5m a year. Instead, National Treasury plans to raise R6.8bn from the personal tax system by limiting inflation relief for personal tax rebates. Meyer pointed out that most South Africans don't even save at all, let alone use the full 27.5% tax free retirement allocation. Apart from RAs, consumers can also utilise tax-free savings accounts as a means of gaining relief from taxes.
Relief for the local bourse
The JSE had some reprieve on Friday as the local bourse bounced following the sell-off on Thursday. Rand sensitive stocks performed well due to a stronger rand which peaked to an intra-day high of R11.54 to the US dollar. Shoprite and Spar Group gained 3.90% and 4.87% respectively, whilst Pick n Pay and Mr Price added 3.00% and 2.39% respectively. The broader JSE All-Share index ended the day 0.96% firmer whilst the blue chip Top 40 index was 0.95% firmer.
Gordhan: Still many wolves in sheep's clothing
There are still many wolves in sheep's clothing around and that is why civil society in South Africa must be vigilant about what is going on in the country currently, former finance minister Pravin Gordhan told Fin24 on Friday. He responded to a question put to him by Fin24 at a networking event hosted by the SA Ubuntu Foundation. It is like having the dawn break again for SA, but some clouds are lurking on the sidelines, said Gordhan.
Budget 2018: Steel, engineering see lack of improved domestic demand
The Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) welcomes the government's announced efforts to reduce its ballooning expenditure significantly and stabilise debt levels. If achieved, Budget 2018 may indicate a turning point for the domestic economy. It reflects major new expenditure commitments and corresponding reductions in line with new policy initiatives, said Ade. Ade said that, despite government's plans to significantly cut expenditure, Gigaba's speech lacked solid measures to improve domestic demand.
SAA results to be released end April, as AG grapples with technical matters
South African Airways (SAA) now has untill the end of April to finally table its long-awaited financials results, and will host its annual general meeting (AGM) no later than the end of March. According to the Companies Act, the meeting should have been held before the deadline of January 28 this year. National Treasury is comfortable that this will allow the AG and the airline sufficient time to address technical accounting matters, it added.
Mr Gigaba, SA is missing the smart mobility revolution
Malusi Gigaba should have spent more on transport in his budget, says entrepreneur Justin Coetzee who presents his take on how South Africa is missing the smart mobility revolution. WHEN he gave this week's Budget Speech, Mr Malusi Gigaba faced a lot of sceptical people. The trend of the smart city is finding its way into the policy papers of many city plans. From Lagos to Nairobi to Kigali to Cape Town, we see an endeavour to drive the smart city agenda.
Commission claims Airlink, Safair deal would prevent competition
The Competition Commission has prohibited the proposed acquisition of Safair by SA Airlink because, in its view, this would likely result in a substantial prevention of competition, it said on Friday. The commission found there are significant price differences between Safair and SA Airlink and that if the merger were to be approved, there is a likelihood of significant price increases. In this regard, the commission found that the merger would likely result in the enhancement and facilitation of coordinated conduct.
How the budget affects retirement funds
South Africa's latest budget flirted with changes to the way South Africa's retirement funds operate. Explaining the tax treatment of contributions to retirement funds situated outside South Africa, she said currently the Income Tax Act exempted retirement benefits from a foreign source for employment provided outside South Africa. The budget also proposed to align tax treatment of preservation funds upon emigration.

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