World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data

World Economics - Insight , Analysis and Data

The Sales Managers' Index: Africa

Released: October 23, 2014

Headline SMI Index shows strong activity reaching 58.3

  • Market and sales growth rates trend upwards
  • Price pressures moderate
  • Payroll growth shows slight increase

The Headline SMI registered 58.3 in October, an increase of 1.5 on its September value. This is the third successive monthly change.

In October all of the constituents of the composite index increased. Panellists are experiencing high and strengthening levels of economic activity across Africa.

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 rose by 3.3 in October to register a value of 70.0. This is the third consecutive monthly increase in Business Confidence indicating that panellists are increasingly confident about business prospects in the coming months.

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

This Index registered a value of 58.9, up by 1.7 on its level in September. This is the third month in a row that the Index has risen indicating that panellists’ are experiencing rising growth in the markets they operate in. This recovery follows a six month declining trend. The Market Growth Index is now back to the level it had reached in January 2014.

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

The Index registered 56.8 in October, up by 1.9 on September. This is the third successive month that this Index has risen showing that panellists are experiencing rising growth in the sales of their own companies at a rate slightly below the market growth, while mirroring its general trend.

Prices Charged 
The Prices Charged Index registered 54.6 in October, up by 0.4 on September, but broadly in line with the level seen since August. Panellists recorded rising prices, but without any evident inflationary trend.

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 value of 51.1 in October, up marginally by 0.1 on September. The Index has remained around this level since July 14 showing virtually no payroll growth across the continent.

World Economics Chief Executive Ed Jones commented on the release:

“The Africa SMI for October 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.

In October all of the indicators reported on by panellists rose on the previous month indicating strong activity. The largest rise was seen in Business Confidence suggesting that panellists expect the recent uptick in the rate of growth in Market and Product Sales demand to continue in the near future.”


For further information media & press enquires please contact:  

Amelia Myles, Communications Manager
T: +44 (0) 20 7326 8352
F: +44 (0) 20 7326 8351 

A Sales Managers’ Index reading of above 50 indicates an expanding economic environment. The overall Sales Managers’ Headline Index for March (calculated from an average of the Confidence, Growth, Price and Staffing Indexes), reflects the general state of the African continent.

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 series of new products available for Africa, Asia and the Americas, designed to raise the voice and profile of sales people throughout the world. 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 African 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, as well as the China, India and Eurozone Growth Monitors

About World Economics
World Economics is an organisation dedicated to producing analysis, insight and data relating to questions of importance in understanding the world economy.

Currently our primary research objective is to encourage and assist the development of better and faster measures of economic activity. In cases where we believe we can contribute directly, as opposed to through highlighting the work of others, we are producing our own measures of economic activity.

Our work is mainly of interest to investors, organisations and individuals in the financial sector and to significant corporations with global operations, as well as governments and academic economists.

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

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