South Africa is breathing a sigh of relief after escaping a credit rating downgrade. But there are still serious concerns around structure of the country's economy and finances.
The video which shows South African President Jacob Zuma sleeping in parliament during the 2016 mid term budget is symptomatic of a much larger problem of lack of respect for the public.
South Africa's 2016 medium term budget has to rank as one of the most difficult that its finance had to deliver amid many political controversies.
Credit rating agencies have a poor track record when it comes to evaluating risk.
As a veteran of the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd years, former treasurer Wayne Swan is a politician with a great deal of experience with parliamentary instability.
Ratings agency S&P seems unconvinced of the Australian government's ability to reduce the budget deficit.
The political and fiscal vice in which Malcolm Turnbull is now caught was neatly illustrated by a coincidence of timing in these early post-election days.
Crossbencher Bob Katter has given his support on supply and confidence to a Coalition government after a meeting with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in Brisbane.
Budget repair seems even less plausible after this election and this is the main risk to Australia's AAA credit rating.
The federal budget deficit from now through to 2018-19 is likely to be $129 billion, $21 billion worse than in the December official budget update, according to Deloitte Access Economics.
The general loss of faith in the economy is the most important issue President Zuma must address. More radical social and economic transformation, with emphasis on land reform will be most critical.
Academics from several South African universities say that in the current world economy decisions about any country's finance minister cannot be made "lightly or capriciously".
Five billion dollars is a lot of money — and that is the amount which the US Justice Department claims were losses incurred by US banks and credit unions from investing in CDOs rated by Standard &…