LOWER INFLATION The consumer price index came in at 8.7% last month - a drop of 0.4% from July. Standard Bank economists predict the inflation rate to fall to 6.5% next year - a positive sign for a drop in interest rates.
GUARANTEES With investors becoming increasingly nervous of the markets, guaranteed products are gaining popularity. Rand Merchant Bank has just launched its fourth guaranteed product, RMB Guaranteed Strategic Opportunities. It offers the growth potential of the RMB Strategic Opportunities Fund and guarantees your capital back on maturity.
BLACK FUND Investors who want to support black empowerment can now invest in a unit trust fund which focuses on "black chip" investments (defined as listed black-owned companies). Empowerment Equity Fund is a joint venture between Real Africa Asset Management and Sanlam Unit Trusts.
IT'S ALLOWED Some readers complained that First National Bank (FNB) is contravening the VAT Act by stating their bank charges exclusive of VAT (in our comparison of cheque account charges in the issue of August 31). FNB explains that the VAT Act allows vendors to choose between showing charges inclusively or exclusively. "While the other three major banks decided on the inclusive method, FNB opted for the exclusive method," says a bank spokesperson.