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The Sales Managers' Index: Africa

Released: July 24, 2014

Headline SMI index continues to fall in July

  • Business confidence remains high, but dropping
  • Market and sales growth rates continue decline
  • Staffing growth almost stagnant

The Headline SMI registered 55.2 in July, down by 1.7 on its June value. This is the seventh consecutive month without a positive change in the value of the index.

All the constituents of the composite index fell indicating that the majority of panellists were still experiencing rising overall economic activity across Africa, but that the rate of growth is decelerating.

The Africa Index is by far the most up to date assessment of economic activity in Africa, and provides the only available monthly data covering all sectors of the Pan-African economy.

Business Confidence
The Business Confidence Index measures how Sales Managers expect the economy to perform over the coming months. The Index registered a value of 65.1 in July, down sharply by 3.0 on June. This is the continuation of a trend that started in March 2014 and which was only marginally disturbed by a small uptick in confidence in June.

The high level of the index indicates that most of the African panellists, however, still remain very confident about future economic conditions.

Market Growth
The Market Growth Index reflects growth of the general marketplace in panellists’ own industry sectors.

Sales Managers report that overall Market Growth continues to rise, but at a declining rate. The index value was 54.7 in July, down by 1.3 on June. This is the fourth consecutive monthly fall in this index.

Product Sales
The Product Sales Index represents sales made by panellists’ own companies.

The Product Sales Index registered 52.5 in July, down by 2.2 on June, the second consecutive monthly fall. This indicates that panellists are still experiencing company sales growth, but that the growth rate is continuing to fall.

Prices Charged 
The Prices Charged Index registered 52.4 in July, down by 0.7 on June. This is the third consecutive monthly fall implying that most panellists are seeing prices rising, but at a marginal rate.

Staffing Levels
The Staffing Index reflects the number of staff taken on compared to the same period in the last year. The Index registered a fall of 1.3 in July to reach 51.1, close to the 50.0 no change value. This is the sixth successive fall in the index indicating that the rate of growth of payrolls across Africa is now very small.

World Economics Chief Executive Ed Jones commented:

"The Africa SMI for July is the only indicator that covers the entire continent of Africa – with every single recognised country accounted for, this Index is composed of the most up to date information about what is really going on across the Pan-African economy.

Economic activity still remains robust, but market and sales growth continue to decline. Business confidence remains high, but falling, while payroll growth has almost stopped."


For further information media & press enquires please contact:  

Amelia Myles, Communications Manager
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F: +44 (0) 20 7326 8351 

Notes to Editors
The Sales Managers’ Index is produced by World Economics and is based on original survey data collected from a panel of Sales managers in all sectors of the African economy except those controlled by Governments.

The Sales Managers’ Index results are calculated by taking the percentage of respondents that report that the activity has risen (“Increasing") and adding it to one-half of the percentage that report the activity has not changed (“Unchanged"). Using half of the “Unchanged" percentage effectively measures the bias toward a positive (above 50 points) or negative (below 50 points) index. An example of how to calculate a diffusion index: if the response is 40% “Increasing," 40% “Unchanged," and 20% “Reducing," the Diffusion Index would be 60 points (40% + [0.50 x 40%]). A value of 50 indicates "no change" from the previous month.

The more distant the index is from the amount that would indicate "no change" (50 points), the greater the rate of change indicated. Therefore, an index value of 58 indicates a faster rate of increase than an index value of 53, and an index value of 40 indicates a faster rate of decrease than an index value of 45. A value of 100 indicates all respondents are reporting increased activity while 0 indicates that all respondents report decreased activity.

About the Sales Managers’ Index
The Sales Managers’ Indexes are a set of unique economic activity reports covering a wide range of sectors and industries (except those controlled by Government) in over 70 countries worldwide. The Sales Managers’ Indexes provide the earliest indication each and every month of the direction of economic activity, and the speed at which its markets are growing.

Sales Managers are unique as an occupational group in being really at the front line of economic activity. The Sales Manager is ideally placed to feel the first few whispers of caution in the market or to see the new green shoots of economic recovery.

The Sales Managers’ Index brings together the collective wisdom of Sales Managers and consequently produces the best and earliest source of understanding about what’s really happening in the economy.

The Sales Managers’ Index has been developed by World Economics, a leading edge provider of original economic data. Sister products include the World Economics Journal, the World Price Index, the Global Marketing Index, and Country Growth Trackers.

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747 days ago
Now I feel stpiud. That's cleared it up for me

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