South Africa inflation seen falling within range by Q3 -central bank governor

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South Africa’s inflation is expected to decline to within the central bank’s target range of 3% to 6% by the third quarter, which would be sooner than previously forecasted, governor Lesetja Kganyago said on Tuesday.

At its last meeting in May, the SARB monetary policy committee surprised the market by implementing a 50 basis point increase to its interest rate.

It was the 10th consecutive rate hike since November 2021 as the bank battled to bring down stubbornly high inflation.

Speaking at an event in Johannesburg, Kganyago said inflation had been steadily trending down, reaching 6.3% in May after peaking at 7.8% in July 2022.

“My team is expecting that inflation will decline to within the target range either in the second quarter or at the latest in the third quarter,” said Kganyago.

The SARB will announce its latest rates decision on July 20.

(Reporting by Kopano Gumbi; Editing by Bhargav Acharya and David Gregorio)