South African Consumers Not Out of the Woods
April 20, 2010
The quarterly Consumer Financial Vulnerability Index cites AIDS deaths as a continuing drag on household finances in South Africa. Conducted by Finmark Trust and the Bureau of Market Research, the CFVI shows some consumer security indices are bouncing back slightly after taking a hit last year.
The proportion of respondents who said the death of a breadwinner caused a loss of income shot up from 22 percent in the second quarter of last year to 59 percent in the latest report.
"Research by the Bureau of Market Research indicates this may be as a result of AIDS-related deaths, as the disease is in a maturing phase of many of those infected," the bureau said. Many more respondents were making AIDS-related claims with insurers, despite falling HIV incidence, the report said.
The CFVI components are based on a 10-point scale, where 10 is "totally vulnerable" and zero equates to "total security." The overall financial vulnerability index improved from 5.48 in the third quarter of 2009 to 4.66 in the first quarter of this year. The 4-5.99 range is classified as "somewhat financially vulnerable."
Along with HIV/AIDS, structural economic problems include high levels of poverty, unemployment, and debt; low skills; inequality; and ineffective service delivery. Savings, debt servicing and income indices improved slightly this year, while spending vulnerability edged worse.
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.