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Today's headlines:

1. The business rescue practitioners of SAA have effectively "mothballed" the airline as they wait for government to come up with more than R10 billion. All existing cargo and repatriation flights will be undertaken, but no new ones will be accepted.

2. The rand is back below R17/$ this morning, last at R16.98 – despite yesterday’s unemployment numbers, which showed that South Africa shed 2.2 million jobs during the second quarter.

3. Capitec’s headline profit fell by 78% to R650 million in the six months to end-August. The group impaired R5.8 billion for bad debts, and rescheduled payments for R7.5 million in loans. Loan sales fell by 35% over the past six months, compared to the same period last year. But at the end of August, client deposits totalled R97.6 billion, an 11% increase compared to February.

4. In a trading update, Netcare says that Covid-related hospital admissions, length of stay and mortality rates have so far been lower than anticipated. Covid-19 cases comprised around 7% of patient days in the past 11 months, and Netcare treated only six Covid-19 state patients. The hospital group was hit by the suspension of elective surgeries during the height of the lockdown. Its revenue fell by almost 13% in the past eleven months, while its operating profit declined by 62%. Average occupancy of its hospitals is around 50% this month.

5. PPC has reported double-digit year-on-year growth of cement volumes in South Africa for June and July and have continued “at a high rate” in August and September. For these two months combined, PPC expects volume growth of more than 25% when compared to the prior year.

Graph of the day:

Source: Statistics SA

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