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South African retail sales beat estimates and grew the most in seven months in November as specials offered by retailers boosted trade.

Sales increased 2.6% from a year earlier compared with a revised 0.4% growth in October, Pretoria-based Statistics South Africa said in a statement on its website on Wednesday. The median estimate of nine economists was for 0.7% growth.

Key Insights

  • With consumer confidence still at a two-year low in the fourth quarter, most of the uptick in retail trade were due to the local Black Friday special offers in November. Sales were 3.1% higher than in October, the biggest monthly increase this year.
  • The impact of Black Friday trade has been visible in South African retail for the last three years and is gaining in popularity. Since 2017, November has shown the strongest month-on-month sales increase every year. That surge was followed by a monthly contraction in 2017 and 2018 and after South Africa had the deepest power cuts yet in December, the trend may continue.

--With assistance from Simbarashe Gumbo.

To contact the reporter on this story: Rene Vollgraaff in Johannesburg at rvollgraaff@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Benjamin Harvey at bharvey11@bloomberg.net, Gordon Bell

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