‘South Africans are borrowing money to fund groceries’ – study

By Senior Reporter

A study in South Africa has found that the poor are borrowing money to fund groceries while as many as 18 million people live without electricity – because they cannot afford it.

A report by the Daily Maverick noted that the dire conditions meant that a majority of South Africans lived from hand to mouth.

In 2022, according to a study cited in the publication, the main reason why people borrowed or saved was to pay for living expenses, specifically food and groceries.

34% of adults financially vulnerable

The survey also found that 34% of South African adults are financially vulnerable and more than half are financial dependents, relying on either social grants or support from other people. 

About 12 million adults immediately withdraw all the money that is deposited into their accounts, effectively using their bank accounts as mailboxes.

In South Africa, the informal economy constitutes 42% of all employment or 17% of the adult population.

Informal, and some formal, workers are reliant on tips for their income with 21% of adults earning tips for their work.

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