Consumers are encouraged to exercise restraint on excessive spending despite the SARB’s decision to keep interest rates unchanged.
CEO of FNB Consumer, Dr Christoph Nieuwoudt says the unchanged interest rates do not give consumers a license to spend excessively. He says, instead, people should use this opportunity to improve the management of financial instruments such as credit and savings.
“The economic pendulum has shifted significantly since the previous rate cut and consumers’ disposable income has come under significant pressure due to the substantial rise in fuel prices and a relatively unstable rand. With further hikes in fuel prices in the next few weeks, it’s critical for consumers to be a lot more responsible about their finances.”
While credit continues to serve a very important need, we urge customers to use it for activities that add value to their lives, such as education or home renovations. Similarly, consumers should prioritise savings to boost their cash reserves for rainy days,” says Dr Nieuwoudt.
According to FNB, consumers should take advantage of worthwhile value-added services to cover some of their expenses.
The bank encourages its customers to maximise its eBucks rewards programme which offers discounts of up to 40% on select purchases. In addition, FNB recently launched nav>> Money platform which is housed on the FNB App, to give customers a single view of their finances while empowering them to manage money a lot better.
“Even though South African consumers have shown resilience against tough times over the years, it’s important for people to prioritise their money management. The balance between one’s credit exposure and building up savings is becoming more important because economic swings are increasingly difficult to predict. With more financial discipline, consumers will be able to realise a lot of value from the right credit and savings instruments,” says Dr Nieuwoudt.
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