Manuel frets over poor saving habits

By Staff Writer

SAPA, from Business Report
April 15, 2008

He was speaking at a briefing to highlight the importance of savings
for the local economy and to discuss the impact of RSA Retail Savings
Bonds, an initiative launched by the National Treasury in 2004.

Time to start saving - get a savings account here

Manuel said that savings "are necessary to ease pressures on the
current account as well as the balance of payments".

He added that at present the level of savings in the country stood at
just under 14 percent of GDP with households contributing very little
towards that savings rate.

Over the next few weeks the Treasury through a media campaign will
encourage more South Africans to save using RSA retail bonds.

In the Budget Review of 2003/04, Manuel announced that the Asset and
Liability Management Division of the National Treasury would introduce
new securities for the retail savings bond market during the first
quarter of the 2004 calendar year.


The main objectives of the issue were to create awareness amongst the
general public of the importance to save, diversify the financial
instruments on offer to the market and target another source of
funding.

As these bonds are loan instruments issued by the government to raise
funds, they are backed by the credit of the government and are therefore
seen as a low risk investment.

The government has on issue two-year, three-year and five-year fixed rate
Retail Savings Bonds.

Only SA citizens or permanent residents over the age of 18 are allowed to
purchase the bonds. - Sapa

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