NEW YORK, Feb. 19, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The banking sector is vital to a country's economy because it distributes resources and capital across all economic sectors, which in turn allows these sectors to contribute to the performance of the economy. South Africa's financial sector is well developed, contributes an estimated 10.5% to GDP, and according to The African Economic Outlook report on South Africa for 2014, holds assets valued at over R6-trillion. Reserve Bank statistics indicate total assets of R4.189-trillion for the local banking sector, which posted a profit of R51.1bn for 2014. The South African banking sector compares favourably with its international counterparts and has showed resilience against poor local economic fundamentals, erratic European markets, the crash of African Bank and recent ratings agency downgrades. Despite these problems, the local banking industry is still regarded by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as one of the best banking systems globally.
Although this report focuses mainly on the South African banking industry, the Islamic banking sector, other credit granting, lease financing, and loyalty and reward programmes are also covered. Islamic banking, despite its growth, continues to hold a marginal stake in the global banking sector; the same goes for its stake of the market share in the South African context currently standing at less than 2%. Other services within the sector have grown in varying degrees. Credit granting has shown small and steady growth but the National Credit Regulator (NCR) has increased oversight of unsecured lending, including a recent announcement declaring the intention to investigate the activities of mining banker Ubank.
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