The improvement in sentiment across the entire trade sector in South Africa can certainly be attributed to the eased lockdown restrictions since the BER’s 20Q2 survey – when the sector registered record low levels across all categories.
again from 17 August). The Motor trade industry, likewise, also resumed full trade through its car dealerships on 1 June 2020.
restricted trading hours and adherence to COVID-19 hygiene protocols – which continue to increase the
operating costs of retailers.
After plunging to a 29-year low of 11 in the second quarter of 2020, retailer confidence surprised on the upside during the third quarter – rising to 36. A reading of 36 indicates that less than four out of 10 respondents were satisfied with business conditions in the third quarter.
Confidence among wholesalers also improved in the third quarter, reflecting a positive change in the business environment. After plunging to a record low of 4 in the second quarter, wholesale confidence edged up to 33 during the third quarter. In fact, the overall performance of wholesalers in the third quarter was more upbeat compared to other trade categories (retail and motor trade). Eased trading restrictions also saw business conditions rebound from an all-time low.
The motor industry resumed trade through its dealerships under significantly eased lockdown restrictions on 1June 2020. As a result, dealer confidence edged up to 16 in the third quarter, after crashing to levels last experienced during the global financial crisis in the second quarter.