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The Sales Managers Index: Africa

Released: August 16, 2016


Pan-African Growth Remains Tepid in August

  • Nigerian and South Africa’s recessions create drag effect on Pan-African economy
  • Price inflation remains stable
  • Staffing levels remain depressed

The World Economics Headline Sales Managers’ Index (SMI) for Africa – a composite indicator providing the most up-to-date monthly assessment of economic activity in the region – improved to 52.2 in August from 51.4 in July. The Pan-African Sales Index has been below the 50.0 ‘no change’ level for five consecutive months indicating economic contraction during Q2 and into Q3. The continents largest economies of South Africa, Egypt and Nigeria are all experiencing continued difficulties. South Africa is set to enter a period of recession while the recession gripping Nigeria deepened after the improved data in July abated. The North African countries continued to struggle with instability and low oil prices which are muting economic activity.



Headline Sales Managers' Index




Sales Managers' Index Trends
  Direction Speed
SMI Growing Slowly
Business Confidence Growing Fast
Market Growth Growing Very slowly
Sales Output Falling Slowly
Prices Charged Growing Modestly
Staffing Levels Falling Solidly













The Sales Managers Index provide the earliest monthly data on the speed and direction of Pan-African economic activity.

Key advantages of the Pan-Africa SMI:
  • The SMI provides the first indication each month of the speed and direction of economic growth in Africa.
  • The SMI provides the most complete indication of growth, covering all private sector activity.
  • The SMI is based on a key occupational group - uniquely able to sense changes in business activity levels.
  • The SMI is composite index of business confidence, market growth, sales, prices charged and staffing levels.
  • The SMI is a diffusion index, any index value above 50 indicates growth and below 50 indicates contraction.

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