South Africa consumer confidence slips in the second quarter

June 28 (Reuters) - South Africa’s consumer confidence slipped further in the second quarter, a survey showed on Monday, as the country’s economic recovery slowed and people held back on big-ticket purchases like vehicles and electronics.

The consumer confidence index (CCI), sponsored by First National Bank (FNB) and compiled by the Bureau for Economic Research (BER), fell to minus 13 points from minus nine points in the first quarter.

“A string of negative developments in all likelihood knocked the confidence levels of less affluent consumers, including soaring food and fuel prices, the onset of a third wave of COVID-19 infections ... and the feeble recovery in low-skilled employment,” FNB Chief Economist Mamello Matikinca-Ngwenya said.

South Africa’s economy expanded at a slower rate in the first quarter of this year compared with the previous three months. The economy deteriorated sharply last year after strict COVID-19 lockdowns, and a slow vaccination campaign has also hurt the country.

The survey of about 500 respondents showed that while low-income households were spending largely on essentials, durable and semi-durable goods sales volumes were being supported by pent-up demand from high- and middle-income consumers. (Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka and Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru)