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May 30, 2014

South Africa’s Abil tumbles after Moody’s cuts to “junk” rating

JOHANNESBURG, May 30 (Reuters) – Credit agency Moody’s cut
its international rating on South Africa’s African Bank
Investments to below investment grade, or “junk”,
citing concerns about spiralling bad loans and sending its
shares down nearly 7 percent.

Abil, as the bank is known, has been hammered as its target
market of low-income borrowers have been squeezed by inflation,
high levels of indebtedness and labour strife in the platinum
mines, forcing many to default on payments.

May 10, 2014

South Africa’s Zuma promises growth after army crackdown on protests

PRETORIA (Reuters) – South African President Jacob Zuma promised on Saturday to push through business-friendly reforms, signaling he would use a sweeping election victory to pursue economic growth in the face of leftist opposition.

His vows to create jobs and ramp up infrastructure projects came after his ruling ANC government dispatched its armed forces to quell post-election unrest in a Johannesburg slum, one of its more visible crack-downs on disorder in recent memory.

May 10, 2014

South Africa police arrest 59, army dispatched to calm protests

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – South African police arrested 59 people and the army was called in overnight to quell post-election protests in a Johannesburg slum, police and media said on Saturday, as the ANC government clamped down on disorder following its victory at the polls.

Police on Friday used rubber bullets and stun grenades to disperse protestors in the impoverished black township of Alexandra who had burned tires and barricaded roads, spokesman Brigadier Neville Malila said.

Apr 29, 2014

S.Africa regulator launches insider trading probe into Pinnacle shares

JOHANNESBURG, April 29 (Reuters) – South African regulators
are investigating possible insider trading in shares of
technology firm Pinnacle Holdings prior to the
announcement of an executive’s arrest, a senior official said on

The probe is the highest-profile investigation into
suspected insider trading on Africa’s biggest bourse in recent
years and comes after $135 million worth of stock market value
was wiped out in two days of declines in Pinnacle shares last

Apr 25, 2014

In South Africa platinum town, striking miner ready for deal

MARIKANA, South Africa, April 25 (Reuters) – After three
months without pay, striking miner Jeffery Shipulale is ready to
accept almost any offer from his employer, South African
platinum producer Lonmin .

“We will even accept 1,000 rand ($94). We are hungry, there
is no money,” the Mozambican national told Reuters as he and his
wife hawked tomatoes, onions, and loose cigarettes at a stand in
the ramshackle mining town of Marikana.

Apr 20, 2014

South Africa’s ‘spaza’ shops suffer as big retail rolls in

SOWETO, South Africa (Reuters) – In this corner of South Africa’s black township of Soweto, the biggest building used to be the Catholic church. Now it’s been overshadowed by a shopping center and business has only gotten worse for Grace, a 68-year-old shopowner.

Like many proprietors of “spaza” shops – the informal stores that dot township corners – Grace barely manages to keep afloat as more of her neighbors head to the mall.

Apr 11, 2014

CEO of Wal-Mart’s South African unit Massmart to step down

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – The chief executive of South Africa’s Massmart (MSMJ.J: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) will step down this year, the company said on Friday, after overseeing seven years of steady growth and engineering the sale of a majority stake to U.S. retailer Wal-Mart Stores (WMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

Grant Pattison will be replaced by his deputy, Chief Operating Officer Guy Hayward, from June 1, the discount retailer said in a statement. He will remain on the board as a non-executive director until the end of December.

Apr 8, 2014

Pistorius breaks down sobbing, trial adjourned for a day

PRETORIA (Reuters) – South African Olympic and Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius broke down and sobbed in the witness stand on Tuesday as he described the moments when he shot dead his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, thinking she was an intruder hiding in the toilet.

The double amputee, who is accused of murdering 29-year-old law graduate and model Steenkamp, told a Pretoria court how he heard a window sliding open in his bathroom in the middle of the night on Valentine’s Day last year. He said he was convinced an intruder was breaking in and that he needed to arm himself.

Apr 8, 2014

Pistorius: ‘I was overcome with fear’ before shooting

PRETORIA (Reuters) – South African Olympic and Paralympic sprinter Oscar Pistorius told a court on Tuesday he was “overcome with fear” about a burglar in the moments before he shot dead his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, on Valentine’s Day last year.

Pistorius, accused of murdering Steenkamp, a 29-year-old law graduate and model, recounted how he heard a window sliding open in his bathroom in the middle of the night, convincing him an intruder was breaking in and that he needed to arm himself.

Apr 7, 2014

“I’m scared to sleep”, tearful Pistorius tells court

PRETORIA (Reuters) – His voice trembling with emotion, Oscar Pistorius took the witness stand in his own defence on Monday, saying the Valentine’s Day shooting of his girlfriend last year had left him sleepless, terrified and plagued by nightmares.

The disabled South African track star, on trial for murder, apologised to the mother of model Reeva Steenkamp, saying he had fired four times through a toilet door at his luxury Pretoria home in the belief he was defending her from an intruder.

    • About David

      "David Dolan covers banks, consumer lenders and financial regulation in the world's second-largest economy. Before that, he covered Tokyo's stock market for Reuters and also did reporting stints on Capitol Hill and Chicago's City Hall. He was born in Ireland and grew up in Chicago."
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