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Interest rates on hold

Governor Gill Marcus made the announcement at the Sarb headquarters in Pretoria.

Sarb Governor Gill Marcus made the announcement at the Sarb headquarters in Pretoria.

JOHANNESBURG - The repo rate will remain unchanged at 5 percent, South African Reserve Bank (Sarb) Governor Gill Marcus announced on Thursday.

The prime lending rate will stay flat at 8.5 percent.

Marcus made the announcement at the Sarb headquarters in Pretoria this afternoon.

Thursday's decision means rates will remain steady at four-decade lows.

The governor says she's deeply worried about the state of the economy and slow economic growth.

Marcus says the weakening rand is playing a major role in making goods on the shop shelf more expensive.

"The main upside risk to the inflation outlook is the exchange rate.

"At this stage, a sustained breach of the inflation target (3-6 percent) is not our central forecast. However, we are concerned about the revised higher trajectory of core inflation and macroeconomic vulnerabilities that are increasingly evident."

She says the petrol price is expected to rise again in August, applying further pressure to the overall economy.

Analysts widely expected the rates to remain unchanged, as has been the case over the past five Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meetings.

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