Load shedding and a three-week steel strike are expected to weigh on fourth quarter GDP, and the discovery of the new Omicron Covid-19 variant will add more pressure depending on what unfolds next, according to economists.
Last week, the government announced it had identified a new Covid-19 variant - dubbed Omicron by the World Health Organisation. Subsequently, a host of nations - the UK, US, Canada and Europe - imposed international travel bans on South Africa and its neighbouring countries.
Uncertainty about the new variant possibly being more infectious than Delta and resistant to vaccines triggered sell-offs, with oil prices plunging and the rand also hitting new lows. But by Monday, oil prices, the rand and stocks rebounded.