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SA economy grew by 0.7% in third quarter

Growth in the third quarter is good news as a technical recession was on the cards.

Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) says the economy grew by 0.7% in the third quarter of this year, while economists had expected growth of 1.1 percent.

In the three months to June, the economy contracted 1.3%.

The organisation says gross domestic product expanded by 1% on an unadjusted year-on-year basis in the third quarter, compared with 1.2% growth in the previous three months.

Growth in the third quarter is good news as a technical recession was on the cards.

Gross domestic product had contracted in the second quarter and it was feared that a trend was growing.

The finance sector (up 2.8%) and manufacturing sector (up by 6.2%) boosted growth, while the agriculture, construction and mining industries were weaker.

Lower commodity prices took their toll on the mining sector, while the drought hampered the agriculture sector.

Economist Thabi Leoka says the drought is likely to have a bigger impact on the economy in the months to come.

"Food prices and the CPI haven't really increased as much as we had expected, so we are going to still see the impact of drought on the agriculture sector."